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The Wire of My Braces Has Come Loose: What Should I Do?

Welcome to Reese Orthodontics, your Charleston, SC premier Invisalign and Braces professional. We look forward to helping you obtain your best smile.

If the wire of your braces has come loose, you may be experiencing discomfort or pain. Aside from conservative methods to try and repair the wire yourself, the best course of action is always to contact your orthodontist and schedule an appointment to fix your braces. This is important not only to alleviate pain but also to ensure that your treatment proceeds effectively.

However, even if you’ve called your orthodontist, you may not be able to see them immediately. To lessen pain and discomfort, as well as learn some tips for managing braces in general, consider this list of steps of what you should do if your wire comes loose.

Want to find out if you or your child needs braces? Visit Reese Orthodontics in Charleston, SC for leading orthodontic care.

Steps to Take When the Wire of Your Braces Has Come Loose

Assess the damage

There are many ways that wires can come loose, including being detached from a loose bracket, having an adhesive that has worn down, or being bent by an outside force. Bent wires can occur due to mouth trauma, such as a blow during contact sports, a fall, or from eating the wrong food.

When assessing the wire, check to see if it’s damaged or simply loosened. See if the wire is sharp or in the way of your tongue or gums.

Tip: Following your orthodontist’s dietary restrictions will not only keep your teeth healthier but may also prevent damage to your appliance since hard, crunchy, sticky, and chewy foods are a major cause of bent braces.

Try to move the wire (gently)

If the wire is in your way or irritating your mouth, try using a Q-tip to push it back toward your teeth. You won’t be able to reinsert it into the bracket, but if it’s flat against your teeth, it won’t pose as much discomfort. Try using a pencil eraser if a Q-tip isn’t strong enough.

Tip (optional): cut the wire with clippers if it’s causing significant pain or discomfort and can’t be moved with the above method. Since clipping a strong wire makes the piece fly off, make sure you wrap the end of the wire in something like tissue or bandage so you can hold onto it when you cut it.

Call your orthodontist

Whether or not you’re able to get the wire out of the way, you should call your orthodontist to schedule a repair appointment. This is the third step because if the wire is painful or could cause an injury, you need to tell them so you can get on the schedule sooner. Once scheduled, they can assess the damage and repair your appliance.

Tip: Just because a loose wire is out of the way doesn’t mean that you can call off your repair appointment. A loose wire means that your braces are no longer treating every tooth equally. Waiting to fix it until your next adjustment could result in costly issues with your treatment schedule.

Pain relief

To manage the pain and discomfort of a loose braces wire, you have a few options. The first is to use orthodontic wax, which should be in the starter kit that your provider gave you. This can cushion the wire from rubbing against your lips or gums.

Secondly, you can try a saltwater rinse to relieve pain, especially if the wire cut you and you’ve moved it out of the way. Lastly, OTC pain medications could help, but these are not a solution to the problem of fixing your braces and should not be overused.

How to Prevent Loose Wires

To prevent wires from loosening in the first place, follow these guidelines:

  • Avoid sticky, hard, crunchy, or chewy foods. Follow your orthodontist’s dietary advice.
  • Wear a mouthguard during contact sports.
  • Do not try to alter or change your braces on your own unless something is wrong.
  • Try to prevent falls by running on more even terrain or getting better shoes.
  • Avoid overbrushing and/or using stiff toothbrush heads, which could wear down the glue that holds your braces in place.
  • Regularly visit and contact your orthodontist to ask questions and learn how to keep your braces safe so they can help you keep your smile healthy.

Choose Reese Orthodontics

If you’re an adult who is considering braces, you need professional advice on your treatment and payment options. For orthodontic treatments in Charleston, SC, Reese Orthodontics offers the latest technology and treatment plans. Our advanced and comfortable orthodontic treatments can be customized to suit your needs. A consultation with Reese Orthodontics includes scans, a comprehensive exam, and a conversation with the orthodontist to discover which treatment options are right for you.

Schedule an appointment with us today to stay ahead of your oral health and receive the best possible treatment in your area.


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