Being prepared for worst case scenarios is a big part of adulthood. From paying for insurance (you’ll never know when you’ll need it!) to abiding by building and fire codes, having a plan in place is the best way to prepare for emergency services. We know that life can’t be mapped out, and it’s impossible to be prepared for every single thing that could ever possibly happen. But, there are a few things you can do to make sure you’re ready for some common dental emergency services.
Read on to learn how you can prepare for dental emergencies for yourself or a loved one.
How to Know if You Need Emergency Dental Services
Not every dental situation should be considered an emergency. Here are a few things to consider when you’re deciding if you can wait to be seen by your dentist or if you need to seek emergency dental services:
- Severe Pain: Severe pain and bleeding are signs of an emergency.
- Lost Tooth: Fast treatment can potentially save a tooth.
- Loose Teeth: Adults should never lose teeth. A loose tooth, even without pain, is a serious problem.
- Infection: An abscess or serious infection in your mouth can be potentially life-threatening, and treatment should not wait. You may notice swelling or knots on your gums or swelling around the face.
- Bleeding From the Mouth: This is a potential sign of an emergency.
Any dental problem that needs immediate treatment to stop bleeding, alleviate severe pain, or save a tooth is considered an emergency. Additionally, severe dental infections can be life-threatening and require emergency treatment.
Preparing for Possible Dental Emergency Services
While you can’t predict the future, you can be knowledgeable of potential dental emergencies and what you can do in the event of dental emergencies.
If a tooth fracture occurs, gather whatever tooth fragments you can find and put them in a container of milk, saliva, or lukewarm water. Once this is done, contact your general dental office as quickly as possible to try and save the tooth.
Avoid tooth fractures by never using your teeth as tools, wearing a mouth guard during sports, and wearing a nightguard to bed if you grind your teeth.
Permanent Tooth Knocked Out
If a child has had a permanent tooth knocked out, locate the tooth and pick it up by the crown. As stated above, be sure to submerge the entire tooth in a cup of milk or the child’s saliva. If there isn’t much pain, try to reinsert the tooth into its socket and contact your dentist immediately.
The best way to prepare for a fractured, broken, or knocked-out tooth is to make sure that your children wear helmets when riding bikes or scooters, and use mouth guards during sports or other physical activities.
If you have a persistent toothache, there are a few things to try. First, rinse your mouth with warm water and floss thoroughly. Sometimes the pain may be caused by a bit of food lodged between the gum and the teeth. If this isn’t the case, use an over-the-counter pain reliever to ease the symptoms and contact your dentist for an appointment during normal business hours.
To avoid a toothache, the best thing you can do is practice good oral hygiene at home. This means brushing at least twice a day, flossing daily, and making sure to visit your dentist every six months for a checkup and a dental cleaning.
If you think you’re experiencing a dental emergency, be sure to contact your general dentist’s after-hours phone line to determine if you need immediate treatment. Here at Endodontic Specialists of Colorado, we understand that emergencies happen at the most inconvenient times. That’s why we keep appointments available for dental emergencies. Contact us today to learn how we can restore your smile!