A dental emergency is a serious condition that requires immediate treatment. A dental emergency can strike at any time and cause a great deal of discomfort. Read our blog to learn about what to do in case of a dental emergency.

How to prevent dental emergencies?

The best way to prevent dental emergencies is to maintain excellent oral hygiene. Brushing and flossing after meals will rid your teeth of excess food debris and plaque. Using an antibacterial mouthwash will also help prevent plaque and tartar buildup. Additionally, make sure you see your dentist at least twice a year for regular dental cleanings and comprehensive exams.

Other things that you can do include:

  • Avoid chewing on hard foods. Biting down on ice or hard candy can easily crack or chip a tooth.
  • Avoid biting your fingernails or chewing on pens or pencils. Using your teeth as tools can easily crack or chip a tooth.
  • Wear a mouthguard when you play sports. A mouthguard will help prevent injuries to your jaw or mouth.
  • Use a seatbelt correctly. A seatbelt worn incorrectly or strapped too tight can wear down your jaw and cause damage to your teeth.
  • If you play contact sports or participate in sports that may result in a blow to the face or mouth, wear a mouthguard, or dental guard, to reduce the risk of injury.

What to do in the event of a dental emergency?

  • Toothache

Toothaches can be caused by any number of things, including gum disease, cavities, or teeth grinding. If your gums are swollen, red, and sensitive to touch, it is probably a sign that you have gum disease. Often, gum disease causes toothache pain. If your teeth are sensitive to hot and cold, it could mean you have cavities or a hole in your tooth.

If you are experiencing toothache pain, make an appointment with your dentist. The dentist will determine the cause of the toothache and suggest the best treatments. You can have a salt-water rinse and take a pain-reliever till you see our dentist.

  • Knocked out tooth

If the tooth is a permanent tooth, it is vital to reimplant the tooth in the socket as soon as possible. Holding the tooth by the crown rather than the root, gently rinse off any dirt or debris but do not scrub the tooth. Then, place the tooth back in the socket and bite down gently. If you are unable to reimplant the tooth, place it back into the socket between the cheek and gum, or place it in a glass of milk. Then, contact your dentist right away.

  • Lost filling

In the event of losing a filling, it is important to schedule an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. Fillings help restore a tooth’s shape and function after decay, so losing one can lead to discomfort and sensitivity. Fortunately, your emergency dentist can usually repair a filling the same day.

  • Loose crown or bridge

If your crown comes off, pick up the crown, and call our office. You can temporarily place the crown back over your natural tooth to help it heal until you can get to our office.

If the crown does come off, the inside of your natural tooth will be exposed, so you will need to brush and floss it regularly. You may need to switch to a softer toothbrush, too. If pain is present, you can also take some over-the-counter pain medication. In the meantime, you can place the crown in a glass of milk or salt water to help preserve it until you arrive at our office.

  • A broken jaw or facial bone

If your jaw is fractured, you have a few options to prevent pain and further damage. You can rinse your mouth with warm water and place a compress on the area to reduce swelling. Apply ice to the outside of your jaw to reduce swelling. Call our emergency dentist immediately.

  • Objects caught between teeth

If you bite into something hard or sharp, the object can become stuck between your teeth. When this happens, use dental floss to gently remove the object. Do not try to pull the object out, as you could damage your teeth or gums. If the object still does not come out, contact our dental office to schedule an appointment.

  • Severe bleeding gums

If you experience severe bleeding gums after flossing or after using dental floss picks, rinse your mouth with warm water and then apply a cold compress to the outside of your cheek. If bleeding continues, call your dentist’s office.

Tanega Dental, located in South San Francisco, CA, is equipped with the best dentists and latest technologies. Call us at (650) 794-0203 and schedule an appointment with our family dentist. 

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