Accidental Braces Bracket Swallowing: What will Happen?

Short Answer: If you accidentally swallow a braces bracket, most likely nothing serious will happen. The bracket will pass through your digestive system and end up in the toilet.

A braces bracket is a small square metal or ceramic piece that is attached to the front of each tooth with a special bonding agent.

The bracket serves as a handle that holds the dental wire in place and helps to move the teeth into the desired position.

If you accidentally swallow a braces bracket, most of the time, nothing serious will happen.

Your stomach acids will dissolve as much of the bracket as they can, and the rest will pass through your digestive system and end up in the toilet.

This is because braces brackets are made of stainless steel or ceramic, which are biocompatible materials that do not cause harm to your body.

Stainless steel is an alloy of iron, chromium, nickel, and other metals that can resist corrosion and rust.

Ceramic is a hard material made of clay, minerals, and metal oxides that can withstand high temperatures and pressures.

Stainless steel or ceramic can be safely ingested in small amounts, as they do not react with your stomach acid or cause any toxic effects.

However, if the bracket becomes lodged somewhere in your body, such as your esophagus, stomach, or intestines, it can cause pain, bleeding, infection, or perforation.

It is quite uncommon to swallow a braces bracket due to the way they are attached to your teeth and wires.

However, it can happen if you bite into something hard or sticky that can break or loosen the bracket, such as nuts, candy, popcorn, or ice.

It can also happen if you try to adjust or remove the bracket by yourself without the help of your orthodontist.

If you accidentally swallowed the bracket, just relax and wait for the bracket to pass naturally.

And if you feel any uncommon symptoms such as difficulty swallowing, chest pain, breathing problems, severe stomach pain, or abdominal pain, then seek medical attention immediately.

To prevent swallowing a bracket again, follow your orthodontist’s advice and avoid foods that can damage your braces like hard, sticky, or chewy foods.

Use orthodontic wax to cover any sharp edges or wires that may irritate your mouth. Also, do not try to fix or remove your brackets by yourself. Contact your orthodontist if you have any problems or concerns with your brace.

Finally, remember, braces brackets are important parts of your orthodontic treatment that help you achieve a beautiful and healthy smile. They are designed to be safe and comfortable for your mouth and body.

However, if you swallow one by accident, do not panic and follow the steps above to prevent any complications.

About the Author

Abdur Rahman Choudhury

Abdur Rahman Choudhury is a nutrition coach with over 7 years of experience in the field of nutrition.

He holds a Bachelor's (B.Sc.) and Master's (M.Sc.) degree in Biochemistry from The University of Burdwan, India. He was also involved with a research project about genetic variations in the CYP11A gene among PCOS and Metabolic Syndrome patients.

He has completed the following online courses: Stanford Introduction to Food and Health by Stanford University (US) through Coursera, Certificate in Nutrition from Fabulous Body Inc. (US), Lose Weight and Keep It Off certificate course from Harvard Medical School (US), and Nutrition and Disease Prevention by Taipei Medical University (Taiwan) through FutureLearn.

Abdur currently lives in India and keeps fit by weight training and eating mainly home-cooked meals.

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