COVID-19

Handling Orthodontic Issues at Home

April 2nd, 2020

At Barden Orthodontics we have made the difficult decision to close our office due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is following guidance from the CDC, American Dental Association, and Wisconsin Dental Association. We will begin seeing patients as soon as we are able to safely do so.

You will be happy to hear you may be able to handle many minor orthodontic issues at home. The following information is provided by the American Association of Orthodontists.

Due to COVID-19, your orthodontist’s office is currently be postponing any non-emergent appointments and you may be wondering how to handle potential orthodontic issues at home. While there are steps you can take to temporarily fix or alleviate discomfort and prevent additional damage, your orthodontist should always be notified. Contact them if you have any concerns during this time.  Many times, they may be able to handle the issue over the phone or virtually through video communication.

During this time, make sure to stay in contact with your orthodontist about when they plan to reopen if you need to have any appointments rescheduled. For many offices, information regarding this is available on practices’ Facebook pages and/or websites.

Tools + Supplies

With these tools and supplies on hand, you will be prepared to handle the most common orthodontic issues

  • Orthodontic relief wax
  • Dental floss
  • Disinfected tweezers
  • Q-tips
  • Salt
  • Interproximal brush
  • Toothpicks
  • Non-prescription pain reliever (acetaminophen or ibuprofen)
  • Topical Anesthetic (such as Orabase or Ora-Gel)

Lost O-ring

An “O” ring is the tiny rubber band or sometimes a very thin wire (ligature), that holds the orthodontic wire in the bracket/brace. If a rubber o-ring should come off, you may be able to put it back in place using disinfected tweezers. If a wire ligature comes loose, simply remove it with the tweezers. If the wire ligature is sticking out into the lip but is not loose, it may be bent back down with a Q-tip or pencil eraser to eliminate the irritation.  Should this happen, be sure to contact your orthodontist to notify them and come up with a plan for repair. Note: self-ligating brackets don’t use o-rings.

Discomfort

It’s normal to have some discomfort during orthodontic treatment as your teeth move however it should not last longer than a couple days. Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water and over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, may alleviate some discomfort.  If the discomfort lasts longer than a couple days, be sure to call your orthodontist to discuss.

Mouth Sores

Some patients are susceptible to episodes of mouth sores. While braces do not cause them, they may be precipitated or exacerbated by an irritation from braces. One or several areas of ulceration of the cheeks, lips or tongue may appear. This is not an emergency but may be very uncomfortable. Prompt relief may be achieved by applying a small amount of topical anesthetic (such as Orabase or Ora-Gel) directly to the ulcerated surface using a cotton swab – reapply as needed.  If after a couple days the discomfort does not resolve, call your orthodontist to discuss.

Irritation in Mouth

Sometimes braces or wires can be irritating to the mouth, especially when eating. A small amount of orthodontic relief wax makes an excellent buffer between metal and mouth. Simply pinch off a small piece and roll it into a ball the size of a small pea. Flatten the ball and place it completely over the area of the braces causing irritation.  Wax can be purchased at any drug store if you are unable to get some from your orthodontist during this time.

Protruding Wire

Occasionally the end of a wire will work itself out of place and can irritate the mouth. Use a Q-tip or clean tweezer and try to push the wire so that it is flat against the tooth. If the wire cannot be moved into a comfortable position, cover it with relief wax. Should changes with your wires occur during this time be sure to contact your orthodontist to make them aware of the issue.

Loose Braces or Bands

If the braces or bands have come loose in any way, call your orthodontist to determine appropriate next steps.

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COVID-19 and your Treatment

April 2nd, 2020

At Barden Orthodontics we have made the difficult decision to close our office due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is following guidance from the CDC, American Dental Association, and Wisconsin Dental Association. We will begin seeing patients as soon as we are able to safely do so.

In the meantime, here is helpful information from the American Association of Orthodontists.

My Orthodontist’s Office Is Closed, What Does That Mean for My Treatment?

Given the outbreak of COVID-19, your orthodontist may have made the difficult, but important, decision to postpone any non-emergent appointments. You can be assured that this decision was not made lightly but was made to protect patients, staff and families.

Given the closure, you may have a few questions.

Will this delay my treatment?

We know part of successful orthodontic treatment is showing up for your appointments. If that’s not an option under these unusual circumstances, it’s okay. Don’t panic. Though your appointments are scheduled out to achieve maximum success, this hiccup shouldn’t have much of an impact on your overall treatment plan. Given the situation, your orthodontist will work hard to get your treatment plan back on track when they reopen.

You can help keep treatment on track by following your orthodontist’s directions, avoiding hard and sticky foods and keeping your teeth clean.  With limited appointments available, now is not the time to be breaking brackets, and keeping your teeth clean will ensure the best possible result.

What now?

Make sure to stay in contact with your orthodontist about when they plan to reopen and get any appointments you’re going to miss rescheduled. For many offices, information regarding this is available on practices’ Facebook pages and/or websites.

A timeline as to when they reopen may be up-in-the-air, but you can rest assured they are making decisions with your best interest in mind.

My orthodontist said they will continue “essential dental care.” What does that mean?

If you have an urgent need during this time, such as pain or injury, your orthodontist will likely be available for emergency appointments. Please contact their office to determine the best course of action for your specific situation.

There’s a lot of uncertainty right now, but what’s one thing we know for sure?

Your orthodontist looks forward to seeing you back in our office soon!

For more information on AAO guidelines during this unprecedented time, visit aaoinfo.org/virus.

Stay safe, be healthy and follow us on Facebook for office updates and orthodontic tips.

 

Committed to your Health

March 11th, 2020

At Barden Orthodontics patient health and safety is our priority. We understand that people are currently worried about the spread of viruses. We have always followed the strictest sterilization and sanitation protocols advised by OSHA to prevent the spread of pathogens and to ensure the health of both our patients and staff. We will continue to be proactive in our efforts to maintain a safe and healthy environment.

At Barden Orthodontics we promise:

  • Use of state-of-the-art sterilization equipment.
  • Strict use of cleaning and disinfection procedures in the treatment rooms.
  • Multi-stage air purifiers have been ordered from Surgically Clean Air. These purifiers remove particles and destroy small particles in the air, including viruses. These will be installed in treatment rooms and reception area.
  • Routine cleaning and disinfection of high touch, common areas.
  • Staff uses N95 or KN95 respirator masks and face shields in addition to the usual personal protective equipmen when working with patients.
  • The entire staff at Barden Orthodontics has reviewed the newest sterilization and disinfection protocols to protect patient health.

New for your appointments:

  • Prior to the day of the appointment, our office will email you two forms (COVID-19 Supplemental Informed Consent and Supplemental Health Questionnaire). Please have the forms completed by the patient or guardian prior to coming to the appointment.
  • Please brush and floss prior to your appointment. The tooth brushing station will be closed following recommendation by the AAO.
  • To minimize use of the waiting room, please call us at 414-962-1281 when you have arrived at our building. We will let you know if we are ready for your appointment. If not, we will ask you to wait outside, or in your car, and we will text when we are ready.
  • We ask that only the patient, and a maximum of one guardian, come to the appointment to reduce the number of people in the office.
  • Someone from our office will greet you at the door and take your temperature using a touchless thermometer. Anyone with a temperature of 100.4 or higher will have their appointment rescheduled for a later date.
  • Please wear a cloth mask or face covering as you enter the building.
  • Please use the hand sanitizer available when you enter the office.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides important and up-to-date information to the public and healthcare providers. We will continue to monitor this information and follow all necessary protocols to maintain the health and safety of our patients and staff. Thank you for your cooperation.

UPDATED May 1, 2020 to reflect the newest office procedures in response to to COVID-19

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