In a perfect world, we’d all just brush and floss our teeth, show up for our routine dental checkups and maintenance, and never have to worry about any tooth injuries or other dental problems. Of course, this is anything but a perfect world, and injuries to those precious teeth are more common than many people think. Obviously, any injured tooth should be examined and treated by your dentist as soon as reasonably possible. The question is, though: is there emergency first aid for injured teeth that can help to minimize the potential damage? As it turns out, there are things you should do in the immediate aftermath of any dental injury.
Like any other injury to your body, the type of first aid you apply should be adjusted to the type of injury your tooth has suffered. With some types of injuries, your first aid will focus more on what you shouldn’t do than on any steps you can take on your own:
- Chipped and Broken Teeth. When this injury occurs, you should always try to find any tooth fragment that has come loose, since the piece can often be put back into place with dental bonding materials. Don’t try to repair it yourself.
- Cracked Teeth. This is typically a more serious type of break, and can create a great deal of pain if the break exposed the pulp in any way. Try to avoid putting pressure on the tooth and get it seen by a dentist as soon as possible.
- Tooth Knocked out of Place. Many people try to put misaligned teeth back into place, but that can make the problem worse. Don’t try to remove the tooth at this point. Instead, schedule an appointment with your dentist so that he or she can reposition the tooth. Do this early, though, as ignoring the problem will only make it more difficult to correct later.
As strange as it might sound, the one type of tooth injury that you actually can handle on your own is the one that most people would view as the most severe injury of all: a tooth that is knocked completely out of your mouth. That’s because you can replant a tooth that comes loose if you are able to do that within the first five minutes after it is removed. In those first few minutes, your gums and body will still accept the inserted tooth and the ligaments can reconnect.
To accomplish a replanting, you should rinse your tooth root with cold water, keeping your fingers away from the root. Hold onto the crown of the tooth and reposition it into its socket – applying pressure for several minutes so that it stays in place. Get into see a dentist as soon as you can.
At Ebenezer Dental, we’re always here to help our patients with all of their dental needs – including those unforeseen injuries that require emergency care. To find out more about how the best dentist in Midtown Manhattan can help you to properly respond to dental emergencies, give us a call today.