Most dental practices are not open for an in-office consultation, except for certain emergency dental problems. Seeing your dental professional for a face-to-face dental consultation during the COVID-19 period may not be possible, but, with the right information, you can receive the proper care you need. It is important to know and identify dental emergencies so you know the right care to seek.
What is a dental emergency?
Dental emergencies are dental conditions that require immediate dental care. Some dental issues may not require immediate care, and some self-help remedies at home would be sufficient to manage the problem until you have access to a dentist in Townsville to examine your dental health.
You need to get immediate dental care from an emergency dentist to avoid further complications from your dental dental emergency.
Which symptoms require urgent dental care?
The following symptoms require you to seek urgent dental care.
- Facial swelling that extends to the neck or eye
- Bleeding after a tooth extraction that continues for more than 20 minutes even after applying pressure with a clean handkerchief or gauze
- Continuous bleeding resulting from a trauma
- Intense toothache affecting your sleep and comfort or causes fever and swelling, which a painkiller does not alleviate
Ensure you visit an emergency room immediately if you experience the following.
- Trauma that affects your vision, causing vomiting or unconsciousness
- Facial swelling affecting breathing and vision or preventing you from opening your mouth wide enough to accommodate two fingers
Non-urgent dental issues
You may not need immediate dental care for the following dental problems
- Missing or loose bridges, crowns, or veneers
- Inconsistent bleeding from the gums
- Loose, missing or broken fillings
- Broken or loose dentures
- Chipped teeth that do not cause pain
- Loose orthodontic wires that don’t pose a risk or cause mouth trauma
If your tooth has a hole or cracks with a sharp or jagged edge that causes discomfort, or space in your temporary filling, resulting in toothache, you can get a temporary kit to alleviate the pain. This may not be a long term solution, so you need to schedule an appointment with your dentist to get a permanent solution,
Try cleaning your teeth with fluoride toothpaste and limiting your sugar intake to prevent the decay from worsening and intensifying the pain. Desensitising or sensitivity toothpaste can protect your teeth if you rub the toothpaste on the affected area and leave it in for a while. You can also use anaesthetic gels like Orajel to numb the pain and manage toothache at home
Managing wisdom teeth pain
Pain in the wisdom teeth usually results from gum inflammation over the erupting tooth and worsens from trauma caused by biting. If you have a flare-up, you may be able to manage it at home with proper care, and the pain would subside in less than a week. You may also need to consider a wisdom teeth removal Las Vegas procedure.
You should contact your dentist immediately, when the pain causes difficulty in opening your mouth and swallowing or swelling in the cheek and face. If you have an infection or a minor one that is rapidly spreading, you would have to take antibiotics. The following can help relieve wisdom tooth pain relief at home.
Although brushing your teeth may be difficult and cause more pain, you need to keep the affected area clean to help the healing process.
Most people use corsodyl mouthwash when they experience wisdom teeth pain, but try not to use this mouthwash for more than a couple of days because it could stain the area.
Eating only soft foods will help minimise the chances of experiencing trauma from biting
Pain medications like paracetamol and ibuprofen will help reduce inflammation
Managing mouth ulcers
Most mouth ulcers heal within two weeks, usually between 7 – 10 days. However, some persons experience non-healing ulcers, which remain for longer than three weeks. This type of mouth ulcer needs a doctor or dentist to carry out an examination. The following care tips can help you manage mouth ulcers while waiting for a consultation with your dentist.
You need a clean mouth for the ulcers to heal and prevent more ulcers from developing. Ensure you clean your teeth gently using a soft or baby toothbrush.
Mouthwash or benzydamine spray
You can use a mouthwash or benzydamine spray to treat the mouth sores.
If you have dentures and the contact with your mouth cause an ulcer, try using adhesive, such as Fixodent, to secure the loose denture. You can also remove sharp edges using an emery board or take out the denture if it causes trauma.
Avoid corsodyl mouthwash
Using a corsodyl mouth wash for more than a couple of days can cause staining
Managing healing and pain after tooth extraction
You can take over-the-counter pain medication for about seven days after feeling pain after a tooth extraction, . The pain may become worse for the first 3 – 4 days, but this is normal. You may not need antibiotics, except you have an infection.
Pink spit or oozing is also normal after a tooth extraction, but if your sockets bleed profusely, apply pressure with a gauze or handkerchief for about 20 minutes. If the bleeding does not stop, contact your dentist.
If you rinse your mouth or smoke soon after a tooth extraction, you will increase the risk of a dry socket which is painful and cannot be managed with regular painkillers. If you have a dry socket, ensure you contact your dentist for emergency dental care.
Managing a lost crown
Losing your crown needs personalise advice from your dentist, so ensure you contact your dentist if you lose your crown. Temporary repair kits are available, but some people may not know how to use them. Your dentist can guide you to repair your crown or advise you to leave it out until you visit the office.
This care tip above may not be suitable for all cases, but ensure you keep your mouth clean and healthy until you see your dentist.
Managing bleeding gums
Bleeding from the gum is not a dental emergency as this often results from gum disease and may not stop until your dental hygiene improves. Ensure you brush at least twice every day with fluoride toothpaste for at least two minutes per session. Ensure you concentrate on the bleeding area and floss, or use an interdental toothbrush to clean between your teeth.
The following care tips above should help you manage common dental problems, but do not fail to contact your dentist to book an appointment for a permanent solution. You can also visit www.emergencydentist.london to call a dentist or book an emergency appointment.