Orthodontic Emergencies | Buttram Orthodontics



Orthodontic Emergencies

Dr. Buttram is an emergency orthodontist near you in Panama City!

Orthodontic emergencies are rare, but they do happen, and our team is here for you if you experience one. Our goal is to see you as soon as possible, so we can remedy the situation and continue your journey to a beautiful new smile.

What is considered an orthodontic emergency?

Fortunately, most braces emergencies can be resolved with orthodontic wax and/or a visit to our office. Please let us know if you experience any of the following:


  • Lost, cracked or broken Invisalign® clear aligners
  • Lost or broken appliance
  • Rubber band comes off your braces
  • Archwire pops out of place
  • Loose or broken braces bracket
  • Soreness due to poking wires or metal pieces
  • Tooth pain or soreness


If you experience a true emergency that is not a common orthodontic emergency, we urge you to visit the emergency room immediately. Do not wait for an emergency orthodontist appointment!

How to Handle an Orthodontic Emergency

f you experience one of these situations, just give us a call as soon as possible and we’ll schedule an emergency orthodontist appointment. We want to get you taken care of as soon as possible, because your comfort and safety are our top priorities.


You can call our office at (850) 785-5500 or text us at (850) 785-5500.


If you’re calling after hours, you’ll be prompted to follow instructions to reach our team. In the meantime, we have tips to make you more comfortable until you can visit us.

Broken or Missing Clear Aligners or Appliance

If you happen to break your clear aligners, retainers, or another appliance, please do not put the appliance back in your mouth. Misshapen appliances can damage your smile and shouldn’t be forced back into position. Put your broken appliance in a ziploc bag and bring it with you to your appointment, if possible. 


If you lost your clear aligners or retainers, please give us a call and we’ll schedule the earliest appointment with you to resolve the issue. We may advise you to wear your most recent set of clear aligners until you can receive new ones.


We will prioritize your visit to replace your appliance before your teeth regress.

Poking Wires or Metal Pieces

How to fix a poking wire on braces: If your braces wire pops out of place or you have a metal piece bothering you, grab some orthodontic wax. Orthodontic wax (also called dental wax) can be placed over the metal piece or poking wire to serve as a temporary cushion until you’re able to visit us. 


Try to push the wire back into the bracket. Use sterilized tweezers or a clean pencil eraser to push the wire back into the bracket. You can also try to clip the loose section of the wire off with a clean pair of nail clippers, then cover the end of the wire with ortho wax.

Loose or Floating Bracket on Braces

If your braces bracket becomes loose and detaches from your tooth entirely, please give us a call, and our team will advise you on the best plan of action moving forward.


If you have a floating bracket on your braces and it’s still attached to your wire, be extra careful not to swallow the bracket. Take some orthodontic wax, and place it over the floating bracket to temporarily attach it back to the tooth. This way, the bracket won’t bother your cheeks and you’re less likely to swallow the bracket.


If you do happen to swallow your braces bracket, don’t panic. It happens! The swallowed bracket will likely go straight to your stomach with the rest of your food, and pass naturally. If you experience a severe stomach ache, breathing problems, or any unusual symptoms, go to the emergency room.


How long can you go with a loose bracket? While a loose bracket is not an urgent situation, it does require your orthodontist’s attention as soon as possible. In other words, you don’t need to drop everything and hightail it to our office, but you should make it a priority to see us within the week! We don’t want a loose bracket to hinder your treatment progress.

Tooth Pain or Soreness

It’s normal for you to experience some minor soreness or tooth wiggling while you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment with Invisalign or braces. Over-the-counter pain relievers, like Tylenol®, can help to alleviate the soreness.


Opt for a soft food diet during your first week of orthodontic treatment, to help minimize the soreness. 


You can also gargle some salt water for relief. Mix one teaspoon of salt into eight ounces of warm water. Gargle the solution for at least 30 seconds, then spit it out and repeat until the cup is empty. Salt water mix is a safe, natural solution that helps to disinfect the mouth and ease inflammation.

Experience a stunning new smile

And enjoy the journey along the way.