Dental emergencies can crop up at the worst times. It can happen with you waking up with a lot of pain in your mouth, suddenly wincing as you bite down on some food, or having a ball, puck, or elbow hit your face during a game during a weekend or holiday. They happen though – and the next steps you take are very important. The question is: What to do if there’s a dental emergency?
The first thing to remember with the dental emergency is that you do not want to panic. That wastes time and potentially can make the situation worse. Quickly assess what happened – is the tooth chipped, broken or did it fall out? Was it one tooth or multiple teeth? Is it a bad toothache? Once you’ve done that, you can do the following steps depending on what happened.
If it’s a toothache rinse out your mouth with warm salt water. That will clear out a lot of bacteria that can cause problems. Take something like Tylenol for the pain – do not take aspirin. Apply an oral gel that has benzocaine, and put a cold compress on the painful area. Those will help mitigate the symptoms while you wait to see a specialist.
Should the tooth be knocked out, put pressure on the area immediately to stop any bleeding. Then find the tooth if it’s an adult one. First try to put it back in the socket and hold it there. If not, then put it in a holder with either water, milk or saliva. Seek emergency treatment as quickly as possible because the sooner the patient is seen, the better chances of preserving the tooth.
Ultimately, you will need to see a specialist. Fortunately, if you live in the Clearwater, Florida area, you can go to Dental Emergency room. It’s open 24 hours a day and you will have your problem taken care of then and there. If you followed the above steps, you will give yourself a much better chance of saving your tooth than if you weren’t prepared.