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82 Third Avenue
Rondebosch East 7780
Tel: 021 696 3876
Fax: 0866 365 879
108 Lower Gordonsbay Road
Strand 7140
Tel: 021 853 8846
Cell: 083 962 0902


Can You Take Care of It?

Before calling your orthodontist with a problem, ask yourself: Is this an emergency? True emergencies are rare. Spend a few moments learning more about your appliance and how to solve small problems. This will help you handle minor concerns on your own without first calling your orthodontist.

What You Can Do

Keep orthodontic wax and a pencil eraser handy. Here are some tips for handling minor problems:

  • Poking wire or bracket: Roll a piece of wax into a ball and press it onto the part that's poking you.

  • Broken wire: Press the wire toward your teeth with a pencil eraser.

  • Small cut: To help the cut heal, rinse your mouth with a mixture of 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 cup of warm water.

  • A ball of wax pressed onto a wire or bracket can keep it from poking your mouth.



Call for a Special Appointment

Call your orthodontist's office during regular business hours if:

  • An appliance breaks.

  • A piece of the appliance is loose.

  • An appliance gets lost.

Call Your Orthodontist Right Away

Call day or night if:

  • A broken appliance prevents the mouth from opening or closing.

  • Pain from an appliance is still felt even after taking over-the-counter pain relievers.

Call your emergency number first, then call your orthodontist, if:

  • A serious face or mouth injury occurs anywhere near an appliance or it causes the appliance to break.

  • A piece of the appliance is inhaled or gets in the way of breathing. This is extremely rare.

Know Your Appliance

Try to learn as much about your orthodontic appliance as you can. This will help you talk to your orthodontist about any problems you might have. Here are some of the main parts you'll find on a set of braces:

Tips to Prevent Problems Always follow your orthodontist's instructions about proper wear and care and use common sense to prevent orthodontic problems. Keep orthodontic wax handy. And spend some time learning how to handle any problems that may come up. Here are some general tips that will help prevent problems.

  • Don't play rough while wearing headgear.

  • If you wear braces, don't eat foods that are hard, sticky, crunchy, or chewy. Avoid candy, gum, nuts, and corn on the cob. Cut raw carrots or apples into small pieces.

  • Don't pick at or pull on braces even if it makes your teeth feel better.

  • Don't flick your retainer around with your tongue.

  • Remove headgear and wear a mouthguard when playing sports.