When a dental emergency strikes, the last thing you should do is panic. Give our team a call and describe the situation. We will give you guidance on what you should do next. We will also make room in our schedule to see you as soon as possible — probably on the same day you call. Before you arrive in our office, however, there may be some steps you can take on your own to manage your pain and minimize the damage to your oral and overall health.
You may be able to remove the object on your own. Insert waxed dental floss between your teeth and pull it back and forth. It may help to tie a small knot in the floss that will knock against the object. If you cannot get it out of your mouth via your own efforts, our team will gladly help you. Do not use any sharp objects to try to poke the object out of its place. You might accidentally scratch your teeth or damage your gums.
Whereas an avulsed tooth is one that has entirely been knocked out of its socket, an extruded tooth has only come partially out of its socket. You can try to gently push it back into place. Over the counter pain relievers and ice can manage pain and swelling. Do not chew anything, even soft foods, with the extruded tooth. It is vital that you seek professional care as soon as possible — preferably within an hour or two of when the tooth got knocked out. The longer you delay, the less likely it is that we will be able to splint the tooth back into place and spare you from an extraction.
An abscess is a pocket of pus that is the result of an advanced infection. There are a few different types of dental abscesses, but all of them are bad news. Left untreated, the infection could lead to tooth loss. It might even spread into other parts of the body and cause systemic illness. If you have a noticeable abscess (which might look like a pimple on your gums), or you are experiencing a severe toothache or other warning signs of an infection, seek help right away. In the meantime, regularly rinsing with a mild saltwater solution might help to take the edge off your pain.
Some soft tissue injuries require a visit to the emergency room, such as when the bleeding refuses to stop or there is a lot of damage to both the mouth’s soft tissues and the surrounding facial structures. If you do not need to go to the emergency room, you might be able to stem the bleeding by placing a piece of sugar-free gum over the wound. After you get the situation under control, visit us for follow-up care so we can make sure that your mouth is healing well.