Whether you’re a professional athlete in a high-speed accident, or an average Joe going to the supermarket who accidentally slipped face-first on the tiled floor, dental emergencies can happen to anyone. Rigorous sports that involve rough play and even accidents that happen on any regular day can pose as a threat to our teeth. Accidents can and do happen, and these unexpected scenarios can catch us off guard and make us chip or even lose our teeth! This is a worst-case scenario, but even a small chip or an unexpected toothache can need emergency treatment. In any case, you need to be aware of how to handle a dental emergency and immediately seek the help of an emergency dentist. Here’s what you need to know!
Chipped or fractured tooth
Before you impress your group of friends with your ability to open a beer bottle with your teeth, you may want to do a double-take on that one. If you accidentally chip your tooth and the fracture doesn’t hit a nerve, the damage may not be as serious. However, regardless of the damage size, your chipped tooth should be repaired as soon as possible by a professional dentist.
If the fracture is large, dentists may need to place a dental crown over your broken tooth. If the chip is small, dentists will smoothen the chipped tooth’s surface. However, if your fractured tooth is causing pain, you need to do the following:
- Save any piece/s (keep them in a container and cover with saliva or dairy milk)
- Rinse your mouth and the broken tooth piece with water
- If there is bleeding, apply a piece of gauze or cloth to cover the area
- Reduce swelling and pain by applying a cold compress outside the mouth
- Visit your dentist to seek immediate treatment
A fractured jaw or dislocation are serious dental emergencies. These can happen when you’re opening your mouth excessively wide such as when yawning or biting. It’s also common in sports activities where a significant amount of force has put a significant trauma to your jaw—enough to dislocate it. This can be very painful and needs prompt attention of a dentist or doctor. When a dislocation occurs, a medical professional should be the sole person allowed to put your jaw back in place. Dentists start with pressing down on the back teeth, pushing the patient’s chin up until the jaw joints return to their normal location.
If you have previously broken your jaw, or find you are prone to dislocation, it can be a good idea to be careful when you yawn. You may want to place your fist under your chin to prevent it from opening wide and possibly dislocating itself. You can also cut your food into smaller pieces when eating as a precaution if jaw dislocation is common for you. For rough play, make sure you have protective gear or a mouthguard that will reduce the likelihood of these accidents to happen.
Even a toothache can be a dental emergency, especially when the pain is no longer tolerable. A toothache can be a sign of a serious mouth problem such as tooth decay. In serious cases, a root canal may be needed. To help ease the pain temporarily, you may need to floss any lodged food in between your teeth, rinse your mouth with warm water, and apply a numbing agent on the area, or take an anti-inflammatory such as Ibuprofen to alleviate pain. It’s important to take note that these are just temporary fixes. Don’t ignore the pain and go straight to your dentist!
One of the most common dental emergencies is a knocked-out tooth. In an event where your tooth or teeth get knocked out, don’t panic, locate and pick the tooth up, hold it by the crown and rinse it off with water. Don’t remove any attached tissue fragments. You can put your tooth in a cup of milk or water to retain its moisture. Get it to the dentist as quickly as possible as your dentist can re-implant your tooth as long as it’s within 30 minutes from the accident.
Don’t panic, go to the nearest dentist
Basic first aid is necessary when dealing with dental emergencies, but never stop there! Though first aid may alleviate you from the pain, dental emergencies require further dental assistance from professionals so you don’t cause any further damage. It’s important to stay calm and give your nearest emergency dentist a call.
Here at Real Dentistry, we can provide you with emergency care starting from facial swelling to accidentally damaged teeth. We understand that when it comes to emergencies, you’d only want the best dentist Wellington has to cater to your immediate needs. Call our clinic for an emergency dental appointment now!