Unlike other issues, such as a cut, bruise or common cold, things will not get better on their own following a dental emergency. That’s why it’s so important that you see us the moment a tooth is damaged, knocked-out, or in pain, whether it’s from a physical injury or from long-standing tooth decay. Dr. Lewis and her team have the expertise to get you out of discomfort and protect your oral health, so don’t wait; call now if you’re experiencing a dental emergency!
Most dental emergencies need to be handled by a dentist, which is why we recommend that you give our office a call so we can get you scheduled for an appointment as soon as possible. Calling us also gives you a chance to ask any questions you have and get tips on how to best manage your situation before you arrive. Below, you can find some of the most common emergencies our patients find themselves in and how to handle them before you arrive.
Use dental floss to remove potential food debris stuck in between your teeth, then wash your mouth out with water. If discomfort continues, take an over-the-counter painkiller and apply an ice pack to reduce any swelling. Get to our office so we can confirm if decay or another issue is present.
Collect any pieces of your tooth that you can and bring them to the practice. Do not chew on that side of your mouth until we get it covered with a crown. You can also cover your tooth with dental cement or sugar-free chewing gum so you don’t accidentally cut your gums or oral tissue before you arrive.
Locate the tooth and do your best to stay calm. Pick up the tooth by the crown portion and avoid touching the root. Rinse your mouth out with warm water, clean any dirt or debris from the tooth, then place the tooth back into your open socket to keep it preserved. You can also place it in milk, saline solution, or saltwater for up to one hour. Get to our office asap to have it reimplanted.
If you still have the restoration, you can temporarily reseat it to your tooth using dental cement, denture adhesive, or sugar-free chewing gum if nothing else is available where you are. This is not meant to be a permanent solution, and in most cases the restoration will need to be replaced. Do not chew on that side of your mouth until you see us.
Most dental emergencies are preventable when you practice daily brushing and flossing. When you visit our office for exams and cleanings once every six months, you can also catch dental issues before they can turn into dental emergencies. Of course, you should also wear a nightguard if you suffer from chronic teeth grinding or a mouthguard if you play contact sports regularly. Make sure to avoid using your teeth as a tool and never bite inedible materials, such as pens, pencils, or your fingernails.
While the cost of your dental emergency will likely vary depending on the complexity of your case, it’s incredibly important that you don’t put it off. Whether you need basic antibiotics to treat an infection, a crown to cover a fractured tooth, or root canal therapy to remove decayed pulp and tissue, your costs won’t be determined until you see us for a closer exam. No matter what, Dr. Lewis is prepared to help build a treatment plan that’s within your budget and gets you out of discomfort as soon as possible.