Dr. Tsintolas is available should you experience discomfort, have a concern, or are involved in an accident.
Please call the office as soon as the issue arises. If the office is closed, a recording provides instructions to reach Dr. Tsintolas.
Advice and assurance over the phone may be all that is required. If an office visit is needed, prompt notice affords us the opportunity to best plan time for the doctor to address the concern. Emergency care is provided by appointment. We are here to help.
Below is a sampling of situations that may arise during orthodontic treatment. Most are minor discomforts that can be temporarily remedied at home until you are seen in the office. Click on any emergency issue for helpful guidance.
The initial movement of teeth by spacers, separators, braces, rubber bands, and appliances at the beginning of orthodontic treatment may cause tooth soreness, particularly when eating. Warm salt water rinses and, if necessary, an over the counter pain reliever such as Tylenol, Advil, or Motrin will ease the soreness. A soft food diet makes eating more comfortable. Generally, teeth acclimate within a few days and the discomfort dissipates. Subsequent adjustments to braces and appliances may again trigger tooth soreness, but generally to a lesser degree than experienced with the initial movement of teeth. If you are concerned about discomfort, please call the office so we can discuss your individual situation.
The American Association of Orthodontists' Handling Orthodontic Emergencies discusses Discomfort.
Effective oral hygiene is important for orthodontic patients because orthodontic hardware can trap food particles and plaque. Accumulated food and plaque irritate gums, which appear puffy and bleed easily. Promote healing by thoroughly and regularly brushing and flossing teeth and rinsing with warm salt water.
A localized area of swelling may be the result of food trapped below the gum. To resolve the issue, Dr. Tsintolas or your dentist may need to clean the area and remove the debris.
If you have a question or concern or if there is a localized swelling, please call the office.
The American Association of Orthodontists' Handling Orthodontic Emergencies addresses Food Caught Between Teeth.
Please notify the office should you experience generalized swelling of the cheeks, lips, and/or tongue. Some patients are sensitive to a metal used in orthodontics. The doctor can assess and remedy the issue.
Please call the office to schedule an appointment to replace the missing donut, ligature or power chain.
The American Association of Orthodontists' "Handling Orthodontic Emergencies" has helpful information under the heading of Ligatures Come Off.
Braces and appliances do not cause mouth sores, but they can irritate them. Warm salt water rinses; applications of Zilactin, Orabase, or Ora-Gel to the sores; and placement of orthodontic wax over any rough orthodontic hardware can bring relief.
The American Association of Orthodontists' "Handling Orthodontic Emergencies" discusses Mouth Sores.
A small piece of orthodontic wax molded over the offending section of orthodontic hardware immediately relieves the rubbing irritation. Replace wax as often as necessary. Leave the wax in place while eating; the wax is harmless if ingested. Dr. Tsintolas provides wax to his patients when treatment begins. If you need more wax, just ask at your next appointment or call to arrange for a pick up. The dental section of your drug or grocery store may stock orthodontic wax.
The American Association of Orthodontists' "Handling Orthodontic Emergencies" further discusses the use of wax under the heading of Irritation of Lips or Cheeks.
A sharp or protruding wire may need to be trimmed or reinserted into a band or bracket. Please call the office to schedule a visit so we can resolve this issue.
In the meantime, there are steps you can take to improve comfort before the appointment. In addition to guidance obtained from the office, the American Association of Orthodontists' Handling Orthodontic Emergencies presents helpful recommendations under the heading of Protruding Wire.
Please call the office to schedule a time to repair the braces. It is preferable to make repairs before the next regularly scheduled appointment because loose or lost brackets, wires, and bands are not working to move your teeth and your time in treatment may extend.
The American Association of Orthodontists' "Handling Orthodontic Emergencies" has more details under the heading of Loose Brackets, Wires, or Bands.
Please call the office. The doctor will determine if the orthodontic hardware was likely swallowed or aspirated and make recommendations accordingly. Ultimately, a repair to the braces or appliance is necessary.
If the patient has difficulty breathing, please call 911.
The American Association of Orthodontists' Handling Orthodontic Emergencies has more details under the heading Piece of Appliance is Swallowed.
Please call the office to schedule time for Dr. Tsintolas to address the loose appliance. In the meantime, you may be able to make the patient more comfortable by gently pushing the appliance back into place. Take care when eating not to further dislodge or twist the appliance.
If you are involved in an auto, sports, or other accident that results in trauma to your teeth or jaws please seek immediate medical care. Also, please notify Dr. Tsintolas and your dentist for advice and instructions.