Accidents happen, and we all have dental emergencies at one time or another. Our patient survival guide is here to help you prepare for the next time calamity makes you book an appointment ahead of schedule.
More than likely, you will experience at least one dental problem during your lifetime.
While you can prevent many teeth-related issues with regular oral health care—such as brushing, flossing, and visiting a hygienist twice a year—you can’t predict the accidents that could land you in a dentist’s chair. From chipped teeth to lost fillings, there are many situations that will have you calling any dental office that is open now.
But there’s no need to panic! While you should definitely take dental emergencies seriously—and, yes, call that dental office—this patient survival guide is here to make sure you are prepared for when oral calamity strikes.
What is considered a dental emergency?
Many dental problems, such as cavities, cracked teeth, and gingivitis, will be diagnosed during regular hygienist appointments. But if you’ve skipped a few appointments over the years, you may not notice anything amiss until the pain sets in.
Throbbing tooth pain is a strong indicator that you need to visit a dentist right away. Likewise, if you have a painful lump on your gum, or a puss pocket on your gum, you require emergency dental care and you should book an appointment immediately, as these are a sign of bacterial infection.
Common dental emergencies: What to do
Accidents are something no dentist can prevent. For example, chipped or broken teeth can happen during sporting activities or simply from chewing ice. If you find yourself in one of these common dental emergency situations, here’s what you can do while waiting to see the dentist.
Knocked out tooth
If heavy trauma leads to one or more of your teeth getting knocked out, you need to act fast. First, you’ll want to keep the tooth as damp as possible. Ideally, you should put the tooth back in its socket—if it is an adult tooth—but if that’s not an option, place it between your gum and inner cheek or soak it in a glass of milk. Doing this will make it more likely for a dentist to be able to reattach it.
The enamel on your teeth is strong, but a hard enough hit can damage it. A broken tooth can cause infection, leading to even more serious health problems later on. Once you’ve booked your emergency dental appointment, you’ll want to keep the swelling down while you wait. Create a cold compress with ice and a damp cloth and place it against the side of your face where the broken tooth is. This will also help provide toothache relief until you can see a dentist for a repair.
Lost or loose fillings
It’s important to seek repair of lost or loose fillings as soon as possible in order to protect the vulnerable tooth. Ignoring it can not only be painful, but it can lead to tooth decay and you may require root canal therapy down the road—which is definitely something you’ll want to avoid.
After you’ve booked an appointment with your dentist to repair the filling, you should rinse your mouth with saltwater to remove any food from the tooth and keep the area clean. Be gentle while brushing and chew on the side of your mouth that is not affected.
Dental Emergency Near Me
Relief from your dental emergency is just a phone call away. At DeJesus Dental Group, we hold urgent care availability so you can book same day or next day dental appointments.
If you’re experiencing tooth pain, or if your teeth have suffered from an accident, call us now in Bridgeport at (203) 372-1220 or in Shelton at (203) 378-9737 and let our receptionist know that you need to schedule an emergency dental appointment.