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What Should I Do if My Braces Wire Came Out?

by | Jan 8, 2024 | Dental Braces, General Orthodontics, Oral Health | 0 comments

8 min reading time

Brace yourself for a few bumps on the braces journey—think wires breaking or popping out of their brackets.

But, hey, no need to hit the panic button!

The key is to address the issue promptly before making a beeline to your orthodontist’s office.

They’re the magic-makers who’ll whip your braces back into tip-top shape in a jiffy, ensuring you stay on the path to that incredible smile you’re hustling toward!

3 Types of Wires

Types of Wires

Meet the squad of wires your orthodontist might enlist for the braces mission: stainless steel, nickel-titanium (NiTi), and beta-titanium.

Each wire comes with its unique features, bringing something cool to the table in your quest for the perfect smile:

  • Stainless Steel: The traditional go-to for brace wires. These bad boys are tough enough to wrangle your teeth into the correct position. The catch? They’re not the shy types; they make themselves known, and they crave regular adjustments to keep the teeth-moving party on track.
  • Nickel-Titanium (NiTi): The wire with a flair for flexibility. This material bends and twists without throwing in the towel. NiTi wires are also temperature-sensitive, adapting to the warmth of your mouth and applying that gentle, consistent pressure to guide your teeth. Bonus: they’re the stealthy superheroes, less conspicuous than their stainless steel counterparts.
  • Beta-Titanium: The middle ground between stainless steel and NiTi. These wires bring the sturdiness of stainless steel to the table but flex like NiTi. Picture them as the Goldilocks option—just right when your orthodontist wants to get granular with the nitty-gritty of your tooth movement. They’re the Goldilocks of the wire world!

5 Reasons for Braces Wire Breakage

Reasons for Braces Wire Breakage

  • Eating Hard Foods: Watch out for the pitfalls of biting down on hard candies, nuts, or crunchy veggies—the force involved can throw the wire into a bit of a quandary. It might bend, loosen, or, in some cases, snap. 
  • Mouth Trauma: These incidents can jostle your brace wire out of its comfy spot. It’s a gentle reminder that extra caution during these life adventures might keep your braces journey on a smooth track.
  • Poking at the Braces: This involuntary routine can gradually weaken the wires, leading them to bend or, in unfortunate cases, break. Keep those hands occupied elsewhere to ensure your braces stay strong and steady!
  • Wear and Tear Over Time: It’s the tale of constant pressure—the persistent push to shift your teeth can, over time, lead to wire fatigue and, ultimately, breakage. It’s a reminder that while your braces work wonders, a little TLC and periodic checks can go a long way in maintaining that winning smile.
  • Improper Brushing Technique: Brushing your teeth with too much enthusiasm or using the wrong technique can play a role in wire breakage. It’s a reminder to wield that toothbrush with care, ensuring your oral care routine is a partner, not a foe, in your braces journey.

Is It Common for Broken Wires to Occur?

Brace wire breakage isn’t an absolute rarity.

For some lucky folks, it’s a tale they never encounter, while others might dance with it a few times on their orthodontic journey.

The plot twist?

It all hinges on what you munch on, how you wield that toothbrush, and the unique dance your mouth performs. It’s a wire-breaking mystery!

5 Reasons for Wires Coming Out of Their Brackets

Reasons for Wires Coming Out of Their Brackets

  • Eating Hard or Sticky Foods: Indulging in hard candies or popcorn can apply enough force to make the wire pop out of its brackets. It’s a gentle nudge to go easy on the crunchy delights to ensure your braces stay snug and secure.
  • Improper Brushing: It’s a reminder to ease up on that toothbrush, ensuring your oral care routine is gentle yet effective in maintaining the harmony of your braces.
  • Broken or Loose Brackets: If a bracket isn’t securely attached to your tooth, the wire might take the opportunity to slip out.
  • Mouth Trauma: Life’s unexpected episodes—a sports mishap, an accidental bump—do happen. These scenarios, like a ball meeting your mouth during sports or a sudden bump, can potentially throw a curveball, impacting your braces and maybe causing the wire to shift.
  • Normal Wear and Tear: It’s the everyday marathon: normal wear and tear from your daily grind can lead to the wire shifting or even slipping out. 

Is It Common for Wires to Come Out of Their Brackets?

Brace yourself for a common chapter in the orthodontic journey—brace wires popping out of their brackets is a familiar tale.

It’s a rite of passage that many orthodontic patients go through at least once. Rest assured, if you find yourself in this boat, you’re not navigating these waters solo! It’s a shared experience on the orthodontic adventure.

5 Injuries Caused by a Broken Wire

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  • Poking and Scratching: Broken wires can play the poking game, causing discomfort in your gums, cheek, or even your tongue. It’s not a pleasant scenario, potentially leading to scratches or minor cuts inside your mouth. 
  • Irritation and Sores: A broken wire can be a persistent source, possibly leading to sores or mouth ulcers. It’s a heads-up that, left unaddressed, this irritation can escalate. 
  • Infection Risk: Let’s talk aftermath: those minor cuts or sores, if left unattended, can take an unwelcome turn and become infected. 
  • Gum Issues: A broken wire can embed itself in your gums, bringing along unwelcome guests like swelling, redness, and discomfort.
  • Damage to Teeth: A loose wire might play the mischief-maker and lead to tooth misalignment, particularly if left unattended for an extended period.

What Should I Do if My Braces Wire Comes Out?

Keeping the Broken Wire Away with Orthodontic Wax

Enter orthodontic magic—a soft, moldable wax that comes to the rescue, covering up the broken end of a wire and preventing it from turning into a poking or scratching menace inside your mouth.

Here’s the drill: pinch off a piece of wax, just enough to cover the end of the rebellious wire. Give it a little TLC by rolling it between your fingers to warm it up and make it pliable. 

Once it’s soft and ready, gently press it onto the troublesome wire or bracket.

The cherry on top? 

It’s clear or tooth-colored, making orthodontic wax a nearly invisible superhero in your brace-care arsenal!

Clipping the Broken Wire Off

When the broken wire starts playing hardball, it’s time for a clip-off mission.

Grab a pair of sterilized nail clippers or a small wire cutter—remember to sterilize them first with a swipe of alcohol.

Position yourself in front of a mirror to get a clear view of where the wire is broken. The goal? Clip that wire as close to the next bracket as you can.

Maintain your calm, and with a gentle snip, let the wire go. Place a finger over the wire as you clip to ensure any cut pieces don’t make a surprise entrance into your mouth.

Once the wire is clipped, use your fingers to gently press down any sharp ends against the nearest bracket. Apply orthodontic wax for that extra layer of protection.

Here’s the plot twist: clipping the wire is just a temporary fix. Call your orthodontist pronto and schedule an appointment to get it properly sorted. It’s a pitstop on the road to a smoothly functioning set of braces!

How to Ensure Your Braces Wire Stays Put

How to Ensure Your Braces Wire Stays Put

  • Watch What You Eat: Time for a snack strategy shift – steer clear of caramel, hard candies, nuts, and gum, and opt for softer, braces-friendly foods instead.
  • Practice Good Oral Hygiene: Navigate around each bracket and wire and brush carefully. And, of course, let’s not neglect flossing.
  • Wear a Sports Mouth Guard: Mouth guards step in to shield your braces and mouth from potential impacts that could throw your wires into disarray.
  • Regular Orthodontic Check-Ups: Your orthodontist will check your wires and brackets, ensuring everything is snug and in its designated spot. It’s like a tune-up for your braces!
  • Use the Right Tools for Oral Hygiene: Here’s the golden rule in toothbrush selection—opt for soft-bristled brushes. When brushing, channel your inner artist with gentle, circular motions.
  • Avoid Bad Habits: Biting nails, chewing on pens, or giving your braces a little tug with your fingers might seem harmless, but in the braces world, it’s a recipe for loose wires.

Follow Our Tips to Keep Your Braces Wire in Perfect Shape!

Contact Loudoun Orthodontics if orthodontic care is the solution to your dental woes. Whether you want to learn more about the benefits of orthodontic care or have questions about the process, use our live chat or call (703) 858-0303 or send us a message through our Contact Us page to connect with our friendly staff today and book a complimentary orthodontic consultation! 

Our office—located at 19465 Deerfield Ave. Suite 304 Lansdowne, VA 20176—proudly serves the Lansdowne, VA area. So, if you’re residing in Ashburn, Sterling, or Leesburg and are looking for one of the best orthodontists in Virginia, don’t hesitate to visit our office! 

We also invite you to keep up with our blog to get answers to many of the frequently asked questions about maintaining your perfect smile, and follow us on Facebook and Instagram to become a part of our smiling community!

 

References

  1. “Braces Wire Came out of the Back Bracket? Here’s What to Do.” Braces Know How, bracesknowhow.com/braces-wire-came-out/. Accessed 24 Nov. 2023.
  2. Broken Braces? What to Do If a Bracket or Wire Breaks (Don’t Panic!), www.theorthodontists.com.au/blog/broken-braces-what-to-do-if-a-bracket-or-wire-breaks-don-t-panic. Accessed 24 Nov. 2023.
  3. “Common Braces Wires Risks, Problems, and at-Home Solutions.” Healthline, Healthline Media, www.healthline.com/health/dental-and-oral-health/braces-wire. Accessed 24 Nov. 2023.
  4. “What to Do If Braces Wire Breaks or Comes Loose? – Dr. Almy.” Fredericksburg Orthodontics, fredericksburgorthodontics.com/blog/loose-broken-wires/. Accessed 24 Nov. 2023.