Dental Emergency 101: Top Tips For Urgent Dental Problems

Most of us try to take good care of our teeth but every day there is always the prospect of an unexpected event such as a chipped tooth or a lost filling suddenly happening to you.

There are a number of dental emergencies that can often be fixed quickly at a walk in dentist. Maybe you have a bad toothache that won’t go away or an abscess that is causing you pain, whatever the scenario, there are some things you can do yourself to alleviate the pain or address the problem, or it may be that you have to get yourself seen as an emergency case.

Never ignore the warning signs

The fundamental piece of advice that you need to remember when it comes to a dental emergency such as an injury to your teeth or gums, is that it is never a good idea to assume that you will simply recover over time and therefore decide not to seek treatment.

It is perfectly understandable that you may consider the damage you have done may be only trivial and nothing that a few painkillers can’t fix so that you can cope in the short term. The problem is that you can’t always see the true extent of the damage to your teeth and gums that might have been done, meaning your problem could turn in to something more serious if you don’t seek a professional dentist’s opinion.

It is never a good idea to disregard a dental problem, as it could easily increase the risk of permanent damage, as well as meaning that you may end up spending more in the long run, getting the problem fixed.

Dealing with a toothache

Toothache is a common complaint and the level of discomfort you are feeling can be dealt with initially, but there will have been an underlying reason why you have the issue, so it makes sense to see your dentist as soon as you can, in order to get it checked out.

In the meantime, try to improve the situation yourself by rinsing your mouth out thoroughly using clean warm water. You might also want to gently use some dental floss to see if there is any food stuck between your teeth that may been causing the problem.

If the toothache is more severe and your face has become swollen, apply a cold compress to the affected area, on the outside of your mouth.

Do not consider applying a painkiller like aspirin directly against your gums or close to the source of the toothache, as you might end up burning the gum tissue.

Damage to your tooth

It happens to plenty of us every day. You bite into something hard and crunchy and the crunching sound you hear tells you that you have just chipped or broken a tooth.

If this happens to you, try to save any of the pieces if you can. Once you have those safe, rinse your mouth out with warm water and stem any bleeding, by applying a piece of gauze to the affected area, until the bleeding subsides.

A cold compress can help to keep any swelling down. Once you have carried out these initial actions, arrange to see a dentist, so that they can take remedial action.

Loss of a tooth

If you suffer a blow that results in a knocked out tooth or it has simply fallen out without cause, it is important to attempt to retrieve and retain the tooth, so that you can take it to your dentist.

It may be perfectly possible to save the tooth and get it put back by a dentist, but there are a few things you should do to help improve the chances of this happening.

You can rinse off the root of the tooth to keep it in good condition, but don’t attempt to scrub it, as this could remove some vital tissue fragments. Store the tooth in a cup of milk or a cup of water with a pinch of salt, or use a specific product that is available, which contains a cell growth medium which is designed to help preserve the tooth.

The loss of a tooth is a dental emergency and if you can see a dentist within a matter of hours of the loss, there is a good chance that the tooth can be saved and restored successfully to your mouth.

There are plenty of other scenarios where you could suffer some damage or loss, such as losing a crown and soft tissue injuries.

The same rules apply in most cases, which is don’t ignore the problem and see a dentist as soon as possible.

David Lochner ran a dental practice for over 30 years. Now retired and with too many free hours on his hands, he likes to share his knowledge mainly by getting his articles published on dental and health and wellness blogs.