I love being an orthodontist! One of the best parts of my job is getting to know my patients and I especially love learning about where they like to go on vacation. Frequently, I try their favorite places out and have enjoyed exploring them. My staff and I will joke that they need one of us to travel with them to be their personal orthodontic emergency assistant just in case they need us when they are miles and miles away. Although no one has taken us up on our offer (haha!), the good news is that there is rarely a true emergency when wearing braces. About 99% of the time, an issue with your braces can be remedied away from our office. Below are the must haves to take on your trip in case of an “emergency”.
Wax: If you are in braces, you most likely have a small case of wax in your braces starter kit.If not, you can easily find wax in pharmacies. It is great for wires that poke, braces that rub and loose braces that slide on the wire. The wax helps relieve any irritation inside your mouth. All you need is a little piece of wax, ball it up in between your fingers, dry the brace/wire you wish to place it on with a tissue, and press it into place. You may have to reapply a few times but it is instant relief. Just remember to keep it on your carry-on bag if you are flying and do not leave out in hot climates to avoid it melting.
Nail clipper: Sometimes a wire will shift in your mouth from the natural cyclic motion of chewing and gets longer on one side. Also, sticky or chewy foods will pop the wire out. Avoid sticky and chewy food on vacation (although it is tempting) as prevention is the best way! If you do have a poking wire, you can take a clean pair of nail clippers and clip the end off. Be sure to call your orthodontist when you get back to let them know.
Spoon or Eraser on a pencil end: These work well for smaller and thinner poking wires. You can take the end of a spoon and press the wire end to tuck it in.The same goes for the eraser. Works great and you can find this just about anywhere except the Sahara desert!
I hope you find these tips helpful and enjoy your summer vacations this year!