No matter how careful we try to be, dental emergencies sometimes happen. The best thing to do is to avoid panicking and be prepared. Learning basic dental first aid saves teeth and prevents further injury. Here are a few tips for dealing with dental emergencies when they come up.
When you damage a tooth
Not every type of tooth damage requires immediate dental care. If a tooth is cracked or chipped but doesn’t hurt, try to avoid damaging it further until you can come in to see your dentist.
If your tooth damage is accompanied by a toothache, you should aim to visit your dentist as soon as possible so that you don’t injure the tooth’s root or any soft tissues in your mouth.
When you lose a tooth
If you seek professional dental care immediately, there’s a good chance you can save a lost tooth. Carefully recover the tooth from wherever it’s fallen. If you can, try to gently place it back into its socket, or otherwise store it in your cheek or in a glass of milk until you can get to the dentist. If you’re able to come in within the first three hours of losing the tooth, your dentist may be able to re-attach it for you.
When you have a toothache
Toothaches can be caused by any number of issues, not all of them serious. Try to manage your tooth pain with over-the-counter painkillers if you can. If the ache persists for several days or is too intense to manage on your own, make an appointment to see your dentist immediately.
If you’re ever in doubt about whether you should visit a medical professional about your dental emergency, never be afraid to give the emergency room or your dentist a call. No matter what happens, we’re here for you.