You know that if you break a bone or cut your hand you go to the emergency room or urgent care for immediate medical treatment. But what do you do when your emergency involves your mouth? Emergency rooms and urgent cares are not equipped to handle the various problems that can cause tooth pain. Whether you broke a tooth or you have an abscess, you need immediate attention for your dental needs. Here is what to do in a dental emergency.
Keep the Tooth
If your tooth broke or came out, it is important to keep the tooth for when you are able to see a dentist. If the root is still in the gum, the dentist will be able to see right away how it broke off by looking at the tooth.
Apply Ice and Pressure
If your mouth is bleeding, apply pressure to the affected area with a cotton ball. If you have swelling, you should apply ice to reduce inflammation. You can also take ibuprofen or acetaminophen for the pain and inflammation.
Contact Your Dentist
If it is during operating hours, contact your dentist immediately for an emergency appointment. Most dentists have appointments blocked off for this purpose. Some dentist offices may not be able to get you in until the next day. The nurse at the dentist’s office can give you more information about care until you arrive for your appointment.
If the dental emergency happens after business hours, you should visit your emergency room if you have bleeding that won’t stop, or if you are in severe pain not relieved by over the counter pain relievers. Otherwise, contact your dentist first thing in the morning. Until you see your dentist, you should refrain from chewing on that side of your mouth and stick to soft foods and sugar-free beverages.
If you are ever in a dental emergency, contact our office for immediate assistance.