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Tooth Emergency? Top Tips When Going In for Urgent Dental Care

A sudden dental emergency can be painful and scary.  From seemingly minor to more serious situations, there are certain steps to take before your emergency dental appointment that can help mitigate the risks of potentially serious complications or even permanent damage.

  • If you find yourself with a painful toothache, rinse your mouth with warm water. Use dental floss to remove any food that might have lodged in the area. If you are experiencing swelling, try using a cold compress on your cheek near the affected area.  See your dentist as soon as possible.
  • For chipped or broken teeth, try to save any pieces that might have come off. If you experience bleeding, apply gauze to the area for 5-10 minutes or until the bleeding stops.  Cold compresses applied to the cheek outside the affected area can help alleviate pain and swelling until you can get to your dentist.
  • If your tooth has been knocked out, hold the tooth by the crown, (the part that is exposed in your mouth) and clean off the root if dirty. Do not scrub the tooth as this might break pieces or slivers off. Place the tooth back in socket with the crown exposed.  Do not force it if placement is not possible.  Instead, keep tooth in a cup of milk, or water with a pinch of salt.  See your dentist as soon as possible.  Knocked out teeth have the highest chance of successful reattachment if they are returned to the socket within an hour of being knocked out.
  • For a lost crown, make an appointment to see your dentist as soon as possible. If you can’t get to your dentist right away, use a cotton swab to apply a little clove oil to the affected area. Clove oil is a natural pain reliever and can be purchased at a local drug store or health food market.
  • If you experience broken braces or wires, try using a pencil eraser to push the wire into a more comfortable place. If the wire cannot be repositioned, try a small amount of dental wax or cotton to cover the sharp area until a dental appointment can be made.
  • Abscesses are signs of serious infections and should be addressed with a dental visit as soon as possible. To temporarily relieve discomfort associated with an abscess infection, rinse your mouth with a mild salt water solution (1/2 teaspoon of salt in 8 oz of water) throughout the day.  This will help to draw any pus towards the surface and assuage some of the pain.

This list is intended as a guide for temporary pain relief and should not be used in place of seeing your dentist.  Many dental emergencies can lead to serious complications if left untreated.

If you have a dental emergency after hours, give us a call at Sol Dental, (915) 599-9192.  We are here to make your teeth healthy and happy!