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Common Dental Emergencies

By Expert Author: Adam Russell

Dental emergencies need the immediate attention of a dentist. The urgent dental care is necessary to provide immediate and long-lasting pain-relief. It is also important to address a dental emergency in the quickest time possible so that more serious health complications can be avoided.

First Aid for Dental Emergencies

There are some things that can be done with dental emergencies to help temporarily ease the pain, and to minimise the risk of further damage/complications. Mentioned below are some of the things that can be done immediately following a dental emergency; however, it is still important to seek the attention of a dentist for urgent dental care for more long-lasting solutions to the problems.

Toothache A toothache may come from a variety of factors. Brushing the teeth can be done to dislodge food particles or other objects that may be stuck in between the teeth (or inside a decayed cavity), which may be causing the pain. Gargling with a warm saltwater solution may also be done to ease the discomfort inside the mouth. A cold compress may be applied to the face if the toothache affects most of the facial area. It is important to go to the dentist as soon as possible so that the appropriate dental treatment can be done, for more permanent pain-relief.

Lost Tooth Filling A lost tooth filling can expose the affected tooth to infections. The cavity left by the lost filling can temporarily be filled with sugar-free gum, or with dental cement to ensure that the tooth is protected from further damage or infections. This temporary solution will help protect the tooth while waiting for emergency dental care. Gum/Soft Tissue Injury Injuries to the gums and soft tissues of the oral cavity often involve bleeding, and can come from trauma to the face or mouth area. The injury can involve the tongue, inside of the cheeks, gums, or the lips. A warm saltwater mixture can be gargled to disinfect the area, and also to help with the discomfort. Pressure should be applied to the bleeding area with the help of a piece of gauze, on the way to the dentist.

Knocked-Out Tooth A knocked-out tooth can still be placed back into the socket, especially if an emergency dentist can be seen within an hour of the injury. The intact tooth should not be touched at the root part, and should only be handled on the crown portion. If the tooth is clean, it can be placed back into the socket on the way to see an emergency dentist; it can also be transported in a container with water and a pinch of salt, or milk.

Lost Dental Crown A dental crown that has fallen off can temporarily be re-attached with the help of toothpaste, or denture adhesive. It is important to go to the dentist immediately so that the crown can be placed back successfully.

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