Growing up, you likely had moments where your parents, siblings or other family members had to teach you important lessons regarding emergencies. This may have included learning important phone numbers for emergency services, such as Poison Control or 9-1-1. But how much time was dedicated to emergencies regarding your teeth or gums? What do you do in the event that your tooth breaks or gets knocked out? What about long-term issues like dental anxiety that can seriously affect your ability to receive treatment?
Today an emergency dentist in Porter is here to clear the air. Here are five FAQs and answers that everyone should know.
How Do I Know If I’m Having a Dental Emergency?
Dental emergencies are categorized by pain, swelling, oral bleeding or large amounts of discomfort. The following situations we’ll cover either are or have the potential to be emergencies, so it’s important to recognize them as such when they occur. If no pain or abnormal symptoms appear, chances are that you can wait until normal business hours to see a dentist. However, don’t use this as an excuse to skip the dentist entirely. Dental issues will almost never get better on their own like a cold or cough.
How Do I Remove Tooth Pain?
If tooth pain is caused by an infection, then only a dentist can provide effective long-term relief. This could be either through prescribed antibiotics or root canal therapy, depending on your case. However, if it’s caused by food debris caught between teeth, a thorough flossing should remove the pain. If you experience pain, whether it’s caused by trauma or infection, over-the-counter painkillers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can provide short-term relief. Ice packs can help reduce swelling if present.
How Do I Handle a Broken, Chipped or Cracked Tooth?
Broken or chipped teeth need to be immediately examined by a dentist if pain is present. You should also visit if the crack extends below the gum line, as this can easily trigger an infection and lead to permanent damage of the root and pulp if not handled right away. Avoid biting down or chewing on that side of your mouth until a dentist examines you. Wash your mouth out with warm water and keep in pieces of tooth for the dentist to examine.
What About Knocked-Out Teeth?
Knocked-out teeth also require immediate attention. After picking up the tooth by the crown and rinsing it (make sure any existing tissue remains attached to the tooth), place the tooth back into your socket for preservation. If not possible, rinse your mouth out with warm water and place the tooth in a container of milk, saltwater, saline solution, or saliva if none of these are available.
How Do I Reduce Dental Anxiety?
In the event that an emergency occurs, you should have a dentist who can meet your needs and ensure your comfort. Many emergency dentists offer sedation techniques like nitrous oxide or oral conscious sedation, depending on the level of strength you need. If you have dental anxiety, it’s important to take note of these services when choosing a dentist for emergency purposes.
Got a question that wasn’t covered? Visit a dentist in your area to learn more helpful emergency advice!
About the Author
Dr. Gilbert C. Price earned his DDS degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center. He’s trained to provide all the services you need to get your emergency handled, including sedation therapy for those with anxiety. If you’re experiencing a dental emergency, you can reach Dr. Price and his team by contacting them through their website.