Dental emergencies – what you should know
There are ways to avoid dental emergencies. You can minimize injury to your teeth and gums by avoiding chewing ice, popcorn kernels and hard candy, all of which can crack a tooth; chew hard foods, such as nuts and peanut brittle, slowly; do not use your teeth to open or cut any type of hard shell; and avoid using your teeth as scissors on tape, packaging or ribbon.
But accidents do happen, and being prepared for a dental emergencies can mean the difference between saving a tooth and losing a tooth.
Here are some tips on handling some common dental emergencies:
As with all dental emergencies, call our office first. Explain your symptoms and ask to be seen as soon as possible. Then try to ease the pain. Take an over-the-counter pain medicine that works for you, but do not put the pills on your sore tooth. Hold an ice pack against your face at the spot of the sore tooth.
Do not put a heating pad, a hot water bottle, or any other source of heat on your jaw. Heat will make things worse instead of better.
Chipped or broken tooth
Dental emergencies involving broken teeth can almost always be saved. Call our office and explain what happened. We will try to see you right away. If it’s a small break, your dentist may use a white filling to fix the tooth. If the break is serious, a root canal may be needed. Your tooth may also need a crown (also called a cap).
Knocked out tooth
If the knocked-out tooth is an adult (or permanent) tooth, we may be able to put it back. You must act quickly. If the tooth is put back in place within an hour or two, it has a fair chance of taking root again. After two hours, the chances are poor.
If the tooth looks clean, put it back in its place (its socket). If this is not possible, or if there’s a chance that the tooth might be swallowed, put it in a container of milk, if possible. With this type of dental emergency, go to our office right away!
Badly bitten lip or tongue
If there is bleeding, press down on the part of the mouth that is bleeding. Use a clean cloth to do this. If the lip is swollen, use an ice pack to keep the swelling down. If the bleeding does not stop,come to see us right away.
Something stuck between teeth
First, try using dental floss, very gently and carefully, to remove the object. Never poke between your teeth with a pin or similar sharp, pointy object; it can cut your gums or scratch the tooth surface. If you can’t get the object out, call us.
Put a piece of softened sugarless chewing gum in the spot where the filling was lost. This will protect the area for a short period of time. Call Capital Smiledocs Dental as soon as possible.
If you have any dental emergencies, call us to book an appointment. We have two convenient locations in Stittsville and Ottawa. We will make every effort to see you the same day. An emergency to you is an emergency to us. We will help you manage any discomfort or infection. At Capital Smiledocs Dental, we take pride in taking the time to explain your treatment options and answering all of your questions. We will always make you feel welcomed and treat you like a person! Come and experience quality dental care!