Guidance for Missed Orthodontics Appointments

Missed Orthodontic Appointment - Open mouth

A message from Dr. Audra Long:

“The American Association of Orthodontists has created an excellent resource to address the unique concerns of orthodontic patients. Learn more about the American Association of Orthodontists.

Our goal is to keep your treatment progressing and avoid any unnecessary setbacks during this time. To that end, it is especially important that orthodontic patients focus extra attention on oral hygiene and avoid any hard or sticky foods that can result in broken brackets and wires. If you were instructed to wear rubber bands at your last visit, please continue to wear them only at night until we can see you again. If you run out of rubber bands, please give us a call and we will be happy to mail you more. Finally, please know that we are still available by phone or email to answer your questions, offer advice, and attend to your emergency needs, should they arise.”

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The below is from the American Association of Orthodontists website.

American Association of Orthodontists

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  

“My Orthodontist’s Office Is Closed, What Does That Mean for My Treatment?” American Association of Orthodontists, 18 Mar. 2020, 

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