Be Ready To Act In A Dental Emergency
You are sitting in the backyard enjoying some refreshing lemonade on a sunny Saturday afternoon. You have a friend over, and your kids are tossing a baseball in the backyard.
Everything is going fine until you hear a child shout, “Look out!”
You turn your head just in time to see the baseball as it strikes you in the mouth. (One of the kids had a better arm than he realized.)
After you get over the initial embarrassment, what should you do? Depending on how hard you were hit, you may be dealing with a dental emergency.
And that’s a good reason to call Oregon Smile Care Center if you live anywhere near Salem, OR. Our dentist will do everything he can to see you as soon as possible to provide you with emergency dental care.
You can reach our office by calling (503) 837-2718.
Putting Together A Dental First-Aid Kit
Most adults have first aid supplies somewhere in their homes.
Adhesive bandages, pain relievers, hydrogen peroxide, and other supplies are handy for dealing with cuts, scrapes, and sometimes more serious problems.
Some of these things are good for dental emergencies, too, but just in case, here are some recommended supplies to keep in your medicine cabinet:
- Vinyl or latex gloves — If you have to help someone else with a dental emergency, you may have to put your finger in or near their mouth. Gloves can protect you from blood and saliva.
- Petroleum jelly — This can be used to temporarily hold a loose dental crown or bridge in place.
- Dental floss — Sometimes this is all you need to fix the problem.
- Dental wax — This can be handy to prevent one problem from causing more.
- Gauze — This can be used to clean someone’s mouth or to cover a damaged tooth.
- OTC pain medicine — Sometimes dental emergencies hurt, and this can ease the pain.
A quick word about aspirin. You should NOT hold aspirin in your mouth. It can burn the soft tissues of your mouth and create new problems.
Dealing With Dental Emergencies
One step is the same for any dental emergency — call a dentist as soon as possible. Again, if you live in or near Salem, OR, then you can always call Oregon Smile Care Center.
Now, we want to walk you through a few example of dental emergencies, starting with some that could occur as a result of getting hit in the mouth with a baseball.
✦ Broken tooth — Broken teeth need to be handled carefully. The tooth could have a sharp edge that could cut the person’s tongue, lips, or cheeks.
If you have a broken tooth, try to find the piece or pieces. Rinse them off, and rinse out your mouth. You can use gauze to wipe away any blood.
Place gauze or dental wax over the broken tooth to reduce your risk of accidental cuts until you are able to see the dentist.
✦ Lost tooth — If the baseball hits you hard enough, it may cause one of your teeth to fall out completely. Try to find the tooth. When you find it, pick it up by the crown, not the root.
You will want to rinse the tooth to remove dirt and blood. You also want to rinse your mouth as well and wipe away any blood with gauze.
If possible, try putting the tooth back in its socket. If it will stay, try to leave it there until you see the dentist. If it won’t stay, you need to place the tooth in a container of milk to keep it moist.
✦ Toothache — First, try to identify the source of the pain. You may have a piece of food stuck between your tooth and gums. Try using dental floss to remove it.
If that doesn’t help, then take a pain reliever and call our office. You also may want to apply a cold pack to numb the pain and reduce swelling.
Call Whenever You Need Us
When a patient calls seeking emergency dental care, we try to get in touch with them as soon as possible. We will listen to your situation and advise you on the best course of action.
We know that dental emergencies can be scary, but the staff at Oregon Smile Care Center will do everything we can to help you get the treatment you need as soon we can.
And if you live in or near Salem, OR, keep our phone number handy, (503) 837-2718, if you or someone you care about ever has a dental emergency.