Don’t Delay During A Dental Emergency | Columbia, SC
- December 9, 2015
If you had a dental emergency, would you know what to do?
Dental emergencies can happen at any time, any place. They can arise as a result of neglecting your oral health, or they can occur instantaneously.
No matter where or when you emergency happens, you should try to get to a dentist as soon as possible. If you live in or near Columbia, you should call Total Dental Care of South Carolina. Our number is 803-272-4162. We make every effort to see our patients in need of emergency care that same day.
In the meantime, keep reading to find out how you can reduce your risk of having an emergency and what to do if one does occur to you or someone you love.
If we knew when emergencies would happen, we would probably take steps to avoid those situations. With that in mind, there are things you can do to make some kinds of dental emergencies less likely.
Preventive care will go a long way toward saving you from waking up one morning with a throbbing toothache or gums that are too weak to keep your teeth from falling out. Your preventive efforts start with things you should be doing every day — brushing and flossing your teeth.
Bacteria in your mouth cause plaque and tartar, and they cause tooth decay and gum disease. Daily brushing and flossing can keep this bacteria at bay.
When you brush, remember to use a soft-bristled toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste. Brush for two minutes two times each day, and be sure to scrub your teeth and gums from every angle.
Daily flossing allows you to clean the areas that you can’t reach, no matter how fancy your toothbrush may be. Dental floss and other interdental devices allow you to clean between your teeth and under your gumline.
The third thing you should do is come to our dentist office in Columbia for regular cleanings and exams. The cleanings remove any plaque and tartar that you may have missed, and it gives us a chance to identify potential problems before they become dental emergencies.
One final preventive step is important for anyone who plays high-impact sports. Remember to wear an athletic mouthguard during practices and games. This way if you do fall or get hit in the face, you are less likely to lose a tooth.
What is a dental emergency?
Dentist offices don’t have emergency rooms, which means you will need to care for yourself or your loved one until you are able to see the dentist.
What is the right way to respond to a dental emergency? Here are some recommendations:
Severe toothache or other oral pain
First and foremost, gargle with warm water. Then use dental floss or another interdental device to remove any food particles that could be stuck between your gums and teeth. Call our office if the pain persists.
It’s OK to take an over-the-counter pain reliever, but you should NOT place aspirin on your gums. Aspirin can burn your tissue, which can make your dental emergency even worse.
Tooth has been knocked out
This can happen at any moment. If you miss or don’t see the football thrown your way, it could hit you in the mouth. If you are looking for something, you could trip and hit your teeth.
Should your tooth get knocked out, try to find it. If you do, then you need to carefully pick it up by the crown. It’s important to avoid touching the root if at all possible.
Rinse your mouth with warm water, and rinse any dirt on the tooth. Try to place the tooth back into your mouth. If you can’t put it back into its socket, then put the tooth in a glass of milk.
Another option is to get an emergency tooth preservation kit with an “ADA Accepted” seal. These kits include a solution that can preserve your tooth until you get to the dentist.
Broken or chipped tooth
The same kinds of accidents that can cause your tooth to fall out also may cause you to chip your tooth. If this happens, you first step should be trying to find the chipped or broken pieces.
Again, rinse the pieces with warm water, and rinse your mouth.
Cover your broken tooth with wax or gauze until you are able to see the dentist. It’s possible your broken tooth could have sharp side or pointy edge that could cut your tongue or cheeks.
It’s common for gums to bleed after you floss if you have mild gum disease. If you gums don’t stop bleeding, you should call our dentist office in Columbia right away.
Act quickly to save your teeth
It’s possible to save a broken tooth or a tooth that has been knocked out in some cases. The sooner you get treatment for your dental emergency, the better chance we have of saving your tooth. If nothing else, proper treatment can end your pain and discomfort.
And no matter your emergency, call Total Dental Care of South Carolina if you live in our near Columbia. Our number is 803-272-4162.