Most of us know what to do to slow bleeding or stabilize a broken bone, but handling dental emergencies isn't usually covered during first aid classes. Arlington, TX, emergency dentist Dr. Joseph Reed of Arlington Dental discusses several common dental emergencies and explains what you should do if they occur.
You have the worst toothache of your life
One day, you or a family member may wake up with severe, throbbing pain in a tooth due to a dental abscess. Over-the-counter pain killers and ice may dull the pain a little, but won't provide complete relief. Abscesses are caused by a bacterial infection in the pulp in the center of a tooth. If the infection isn't treated promptly, it may spread to other parts of your body.
If you experience abscess signs, which include facial swelling, pus, or a pimple on the gum around a tooth, fever and swollen lymph nodes, in addition to severe pain, call our Arlington office immediately. Abscesses are treated with a prescription for antibiotics and a root canal to remove the infected pulp.
Your tooth was knocked out
Although roots do an excellent job of holding your teeth firmly in place, they can be knocked out if you receive a strong blow to the face. If you visit your emergency dentist within an hour or two of your accident, it may be possible to reimplant your tooth. After you rinse off the tooth, put it back in the socket or between your gum and cheek. If neither of those options work, place the tooth in a sealed container filled with milk or your saliva.
Your tooth is suddenly a little loose
The same accidents that cause teeth to be knocked out can also loosen them or move them out of position. If your tooth has moved, gently push it back to its normal position if you can. Don't push on loose teeth, play with them with your tongue or chew on the affected side of your mouth. Ice and over-the-counter pain medication can dull the pain until you visit our office.
Your tooth broke
Cover the ends of your broken tooth with dental cement to reduce sensitivity and prevent cuts to your lips or tongue. Take over-the-counter pain killers if your tooth still hurts after using dental cement.
Prompt treatment is extremely important if you experience any of these dental emergencies. Call Arlington, TX, emergency dentist Dr. Joseph Reed of Arlington Dental at (817) 303-5700 to schedule your emergency appointment.