You don’t think about or plan for dental emergencies. However, they can happen to anyone, anywhere – and usually occur during the most inconvenient moments.
Not everyone realizes that dentists are often available for emergency dental care, even if the emergency occurs after hours or during the weekend. While not every dentist handles dental emergencies, rest assured that Dr. Syed, DMD and his staff do. Give our office in Wilmington, DE a call today to discuss our policy on how dental emergencies are handled.
If You Have a Dental Emergency, Call (302) 994-3093
There are several different types of dental emergencies, and knowing which problems constitute an immediate need can aid you in determining whether or not you should call Dr. Morrow for prompt treatment or wait until the next business day.
Dealing with Toothaches and Lodged Objects at Home
A toothache can occur for a number of reasons and not all of them are considered a dental emergency. A number of them are. Taking preliminary steps at home can help rule out a non-emergent situation from one that is more serious.
First, rinse your mouth thoroughly with warm water and use dental floss to remove any food or debris that may have become trapped between your tooth and gums. Sometimes, the problem is simply a matter of a food particle that lodged itself between your teeth and in some cases, the toothache subsides once the particle is removed.
If the object won’t budge, call our office. Never use a sharp tool to poke or prod at a lodged object as they can scratch your teeth or gums.
If you experience any swelling, you can apply a cold compress to the outside of your cheek over the affected area. While some people prefer to use over-the-counter pain relievers to aid in pain relief, you should never place aspirin or any other painkiller against your gums near the problem tooth as these kinds of medications can cause burns to the gum tissues.
What to do When You Have a Chipped or Broken Tooth
Accidents can happen to anyone. It could be as simple as chewing on ice or a piece of hard candy one moment to discovering a shard that doesn’t dissolve or belong in your mouth the next. When you remove it, voila, you’ve discovered a broken piece of tooth. It happens, and when it does, it needs to be fixed.
If you chip or break a tooth, save any fragments that come off, if possible. Rinse your mouth with warm water. Sometimes bleeding occurs, and if it does, apply gauze to the area until the bleeding has stopped. You can manage any swelling and pain with a cold compress applied to the outside of your mouth over the area where the broken tooth sits.
What if I Get a Tooth Knocked Out?
There are times when a tooth can become fully dislodged, or knocked out of its socket. If this happens, retrieve the tooth immediately and hold it by the crown. If it is dirty, you can rinse it gently with water, but don’t scrub it. If you can, try to replace the tooth back into its socket, ensuring that it is facing the right way.
If the tooth will not ease back into its socket, do not force it. Instead, you have three options.
- Place the tooth in a small container of milk
- Place the tooth in a cup of water with a pinch of salt, or a cell regrowth medium if one is available
- Place the tooth in your mouth between your gums and cheek to keep it moist
Regardless of how you temporarily store your tooth, you need to see your dentist right away. A knocked out tooth must be returned to its socket within one hour to have the best chance of being saved.
If a tooth becomes only partially dislodged, you should still call us right away. You can use a cold compress and over the counter pain reliever if needed. However, immediate treatment is required to save the tooth.
How do I Treat a Tooth Abscess?
An abscess is an infection that generally occurs near the tooth root or in the space between the teeth and gums. A tooth abscess can be serious and, in some cases, can even damage the affected tissue or the surrounding teeth. If not treated promptly, the infection has the potential of spreading to other parts of the body as well.
There are other common dental problems that can result in a dental emergency as well. For this reason, it’s important that you become familiar with them in the event that you ever encounter one.
- Lost Fillings or Crowns (never use superglue to repair them)
- Broken orthodontic hardware or missing bands
- Soft Tissue Injuries
Our office has been in operation for over forty years and our highly personable team is knowledgeable and skilled in most aspects of dentistry. We stay current with the innovations in our field and we offer a wide array of the latest dental treatments to our patients. Dr. Syed has an MAGD award from the Academy of General Dentistry in recognition of his leadership and pursuit of continuing education.
5507 Kirkwood Highway
Wilmington, DE 19808
Mon: 8:00AM – 5:00PM
Tue: 8:00AM – 5:00PM
Wed: 8:00AM – 5:00PM
Thu: 8:00AM – 5:00PM
Fri: 9:00AM – 1:00PM