There are only a few true orthodontic (or dental) emergencies. They include:
In any of these situations, you should seek help as soon as possible — go to an emergency room, if that’s your best option.
Generally, however, the place to start is with your regular dentist. Remember that he or she is trained to handle a range of dental problems, and can most likely offer the necessary diagnostic tools, anesthetics and treatments you need.
If, for example, you have a fractured tooth, your dentist will treat the immediate problem and arrange for the tooth’s restoration; afterwards your orthodontic treatment plan can be adjusted as needed.
Likewise, severe pain or swelling could be a sign of infection or disease, which a dentist or periodontist is best able to treat.