Here are some common dental emergencies from the Canadian Dental Association and how to handle them:
- Toothache - call your dentist, explain your symptoms, and book an appointment. To ease the pain, use an over-the-counter pain medicine that works for you, but do not put the pills on your sore tooth. Hold an ice pack against your face at the spot of the sore tooth.
- Chipped or broken tooth - a small break, your dentist may use a white filling to fix the tooth; if the break is serious, a root canal may be needed. Your tooth may also need a crown (also called a cap).
- Badly bitten lip or tongue – rest, apply pressure using a clean cloth, and use an ice pack to keep the swelling down. If the bleeding does not stop, go to Emergency at a hospital right away.
- Something stuck between teeth - try using dental floss to remove the object, it is what it was made for. Never poke between your teeth with a pin or similar sharp, pointy object; it can cut your gums or scratch the tooth surface. If you can’t get the object out, see your dentist.
- Lost filling - try a piece of softened sugarless chewing gum in the spot where the filling was lost. This will protect the area for a short period of time. See a dentist as soon as possible.
“Early access to dental care can really affect the outcome,” says Dr. Victor Kutcher, President of the Ontario Dental Association (ODA). “Get to a dentist as soon as you can to prevent infection and increase the chances of saving the tooth.”
Many dental emergencies can be prevented. According to the American Academy of Paediatric Dentistry, sports accidents reportedly account for 10 to 39 percent of all dental injuries in children. Any sport or activity with a strong chance for contact with other participants or hard surfaces requires mouth protection and should wear mouth guards when practicing or competing. Talk to your dentist about the type of mouth protection that is right for your child.
If you have questions about dental emergencies, mouth guards, or any of our other dental services, contact New Look Dental at 250-768-7671 to set up your appointment today in West Kelowna. We’re always happy to accept new patients.