Dental emergencies can happen unexpectedly and catch us off guard. Whether it’s a sudden toothache, a broken tooth, or a knocked-out tooth, you should know what to do. Being prepared can make a huge difference in saving your tooth. It can also help reduce pain from sudden emergencies. Regardless of the emergency, your first step should be to contact your dentist as soon as you can. They can help save your teeth and reduce your anxiety.
A plan for an emergency can help protect your oral health.
Stay Calm and Assess the Situation
In any dental emergency, it’s crucial to remain calm and assess the situation. Take a moment to evaluate the severity of the issue and determine whether it needs immediate attention. For severe pain, profuse bleeding, or injuries to the face or jaw, seek emergency dental care right away. For less urgent matters, you can take preliminary steps to manage the situation until you can see a dentist. If you are unsure, you should always call your dentist.
Build a First Aid Kit for Dental Emergencies
Having a first aid kit specifically for dental emergencies is essential. Include sterile gauze, a small container with a lid, and over-the-counter pain relievers. You should also have a dental mirror, dental floss, and temporary dental cement. Additionally, keep your dentist’s contact information readily available. These supplies and information will help you promptly and effectively address dental emergencies.
Toothaches can range from mild discomfort to severe pain. If you experience a toothache, gently rinse your mouth with warm water to clean the area. Use dental floss to remove any food particles that may be causing irritation. Some pain relievers can temporarily reduce the pain. You should also avoid placing aspirin directly on the tooth or gum tissue. This is because it can cause damage. Finally, schedule an appointment with your dentist to address the underlying cause of the toothache.
Dealing with a Broken or Chipped Tooth
If you break or chip a tooth, rinse your mouth with warm water to clean the area. If there is bleeding, apply gentle pressure with a clean piece of gauze until it stops. Locate the broken piece, and place it in a container with milk or your saliva to keep it moist. Avoid touching the broken tooth with your fingers. Contact your dentist immediately to schedule an emergency appointment and discuss further steps for repair.
Handling a Knocked-Out Tooth
A knocked-out tooth requires quick attention. Time is of the essence in saving the tooth. Hold the tooth by the crown, not the root, and gently rinse it with water if it’s dirty. Try to reinsert the tooth into its socket, if possible. If that’s not feasible, place the tooth in a container with milk or your saliva to keep it moist. Also, contact your dentist immediately or visit the nearest emergency dental clinic. Prompt action increases the odds of saving the tooth.