Although easier said than done, rule #1 when it comes to any dental pain is don’t panic. Nobody has ever turned around and said, “Whew. That would have worked out so much better if we had just panicked.” Rule #2 is to take a deep breath and take some over the counter (OTC) painkillers if necessary. Call to schedule an appointment for emergency dental services with Dr. Bains and her team of professionals at Lewis Estates Dental Centre. In the meantime, here are some strategies for managing emergency dental care while you’re waiting to see her.
Common dental emergencies
Toothache or abscess
Toothaches can eventually become abscesses if not appropriately addressed. Abscesses are infections that occur around the root of a tooth or in the space between the teeth and gums. It’s a serious condition that can damage tissue and surrounding teeth, and can spread to other parts of the body if left untreated. Consider thoroughly rinsing your mouth with a warm salt-water solution or apply a cold compress to the outside of the mouth or cheek to help manage symptoms until you can be seen. Anti-inflammatory drugs, such as Tylenol™, or Advil™, can also help ease any immediate discomfort. To reduce the risk of costly complications and to prevent increasing pain or discomfort, seek attention immediately. Contact us as soon as possible to schedule an appointment. Our team can help address the problem and best course of action when you visit us for an assessment.
Chipped or broken teeth
There is nothing worse than enjoying your favourite sport and ending up with a chipped tooth! Save any pieces of your tooth and rinse both your mouth and the pieces with warm water. Apply pressure with a bit of gauze to the affected area for approximately 10 minutes to stop any bleeding. Keep any swelling down and help relieve pain with a cold compress to the outside of the mouth, cheek, or lip near the broken or chipped teeth. Contact us as soon as possible. Broken teeth should never be ignored.
If you happen to have a tooth knocked out, retrieve the tooth, hold it by the crown (the part of your tooth that you chew food with and is normally visible in your mouth), and handle it carefully during transport. Do not scrub it or remove any attached tissue fragments. If possible, put the tooth back in place, but make sure it’s facing the right way. Don’t force it into the socket if you are unable to reinsert the tooth. Instead, place it in a small container of milk, or a cup of water with a pinch of table salt will also work if you don’t have any milk. Contact us as soon as possible and bring the tooth with you. Seeking immediate attention – within an hour of the injury – gives you a higher chance of having it repositioned.
Extruded or partially dislodged tooth
Apply a cold compress to the outside of the mouth, cheek, or lip to help keep any swelling down and relieve pain. Anti-inflammatory drugs, such as Tylenol™, or Advil™, can also help ease any immediate discomfort. Be sure to book an appointment with us as soon as possible so we can fix this issue.
Lost filling or lost crown
Call or email us to schedule an appointment as soon as possible. If the filling or crown fell out, make sure to bring to the clinic with you. If you are in immediate pain, call to schedule an appointment. If possible, coat the inner surface with over-the-counter dental cement, toothpaste, or denture adhesive, and slip the crown back over the tooth. This will help hold it in place until you are seen.
These types of injuries affect the gums, tongue, cheeks, and lips, and may result in bleeding. First, rinse your mouth with a warm salt-water solution, and then use a moistened piece of gauze or wet tea bag to apply pressure to the bleeding site. Hold this in place for 15 to 20 minutes. Apply a cold compress to the outside of the mouth or cheek to both control bleeding and relieve pain, and keep it there for five to 10 minutes. Call or email us to schedule an appointment as soon as possible, or go to a hospital emergency room bleeding cannot be controlled with direct pressure.
Call to schedule an appointment
Talk to your dental office before taking any painkillers prior to your emergency appointment to ensure your care is not delayed.
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