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    Your Guide to Dental Emergencies

    by Saunders DDS on May 23, 2017

    Emergencies are part of life, even when it comes to your teeth.

    Not everyone has thought about what they would do in the event of a dental emergency or how the situation should be handled!

    This guide will help you not only be able to identify a dental emergency, but also to know what to do when it happens. If you have children, keeping the following tips in mind can help greatly in the event their smile should become damaged.

    Here’s how you can know what a dental emergency is as well as how to handle the incident once it happens.

    What Is a Dental Emergency?

    A dental emergency is a problem that requires immediate care in order to stop your tooth from being lost, control bleeding, or stop intense pain.

    If you have an oral health problem and think you can live with the pain, consider the following situations to see if your case may actually require immediate attention from your dentist in Asheville.

    Situations That Require Immediate Care

    When the following instances happen, it’s best to get yourself to a dentist as soon as possible. If your dentist isn’t available, go to the emergency room.

    A Knocked-Out Tooth

    If your tooth has been knocked out whether in one piece or in fragments, gather all the pieces of your tooth. Ideally, you’d want to put the tooth back in your mouth and hold it in its socket until you can see the dentist.

    If this just isn’t possible, put the tooth in a container of saliva or milk. You may also need a piece of gauze or a clean cloth to hold on the area to help slow the bleeding. Then get yourself to the dentist as soon as you’re able.

    Cracked or Fractured Teeth

    Any tooth that’s been cracked or broken as the result of an injury should be seen as soon as possible by your Asheville dentist. This is because the sooner you’re able to receive treatment, the more likely it is that your dentist will be able to save your tooth and put the pieces back. Gather all the pieces of your chipped or broken tooth to take with you.

    Injury to Teeth or Jaw

    Whether it’s from an accident or injury, any impact to your teeth or jaw should be evaluated by your dentist in Asheville. If the accident was severe enough to knock out one or several of your teeth, take the tooth with you to the dentist. Your Asheville dentist can also take x-rays to determine if your jaw has been affected by the injury.

    Severe Toothache

    Putting off a toothache is never a good idea. Toothaches rarely go away on their own and will need professional treatment to get better. Sometimes, a tooth abscess can result if there’s an infection that’s gone untreated.

    If your toothache is so severe you can’t stand the pain, this could be a life-threatening infection, so get yourself to your emergency dentist or the emergency room at your local hospital as soon as you can.

    Dental Problems That Can Wait

    There are some oral health issues that can wait until regular office hours for you to be seen by your dentist for an exam. This list includes the following issues with your smile.

    A Lost Crown or Filling

    When a crown or filling has been lost, you can wait until your dentist is open to get an appointment. Try not to put this off for too long, though. Call your Asheville dentist and see what they recommend as far as getting in to replace the crown or filling and protecting your tooth. In the meantime, try to chew on the opposite side of your mouth that’s missing the filling or crown!

    Broken or Damaged Braces

    If you or your child has broken braces, this isn’t a cause for emergency. Call your dentist or orthodontist and make an appointment to get the repairs done. You can get some orthodontic wax if there are any wires poking out to protect the gum tissue until the fix is complete.

    Mild Toothache

    When you have a toothache that’s not quite as painful as a more severe, throbbing toothache, call your dentist in Asheville to find out their recommendation for an appointment. Getting in to see your dentist in a matter of days should suffice, but if the pain worsens, insist on being seen sooner.

    What Can You Do?

    When these dental emergencies happen, it’s important to be prepared. Here are just a few things you can do in order to increase the chances that your tooth will be able to be saved when you see your dentist.

    Keep a List of Dentists

    It’s important to know where you can go for dental emergencies when they happen. Talk to your local dentist about when they’re open and available to receive emergency appointments. Have them recommend a place or a provider that’s open after hours should you need emergency care.

    Keep a list of dentists, urgent care clinics or local hospitals in your emergency kit so you can be seen as soon as possible for your broken or damaged teeth.

    Stock an Emergency Kit

    You might have a first-aid kit in your car or office, but does this include items that’ll be needed for a tooth emergency? Here’s what you should stock in a dental emergency kit.

    – Clean gauze

    – A sealable container for the lost tooth

    – Disposable cold pack for pain and swelling

    – Orthodontic wax

    – OTC temporary filling material

    You may also choose to keep gloves and additional dressings such as cotton balls in your kit. Keep it close by and include the numbers for your local dentists and hospitals.

    Know the Plan

    Out of all of your preparation, knowing what to do can help you act quickly in an emergency situation.

    This means knowing that knocked-out teeth need to be stored in saliva or milk to stay alive. It means reaching out to your dentist for advice when you need it. It also means understanding that broken teeth really shouldn’t wait until the next day to see the dentist—go there now!

    When you have a dental emergency, being prepared is half the battle. Keep these tips in mind in the event that you or someone you know has a dental problem that requires immediate care.

    Remember, you can prevent many dental health problems such as a tooth infection or a lost filling by regularly seeing your dentist. You can help save your tooth by knowing the best practices following a tooth injury. Make an appointment with us to prevent oral health issues and talk about emergency care.

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