Avoiding Dental Emergencies
Ideally, our teeth and other oral structures could be forever protected from injury. As life would have it, dental problems may occur when you least expect it. At O’Brien Dental Care, we understand. We do all that we can to see urgent conditions the same day. It is our intent to quickly restore comfort, and then devise a plan to repair the damaged tooth with durable materials. At the same time, we know it is important that our patients know what to do to minimize their risk of injury.
We have all heard that prevention is the best medicine. This pertains to dental conditions as much as any other that can affect general health and wellness. Some of the common injuries that damage teeth can be prevented with healthy habits, and we don’t mean brushing and flossing.
One of the primary ways that teeth can be injured is in a sporting activity. Mouth guards are important to athletes of all ages and stages. Whether your five-year-old is playing T-ball or your spouse has a weekly soccer tournament, protecting the teeth and jaw is crucial. Many sporting stores sell off-the-shelf mouth guards, but research has demonstrated the inefficiency of such gear. To gain the highest extent of protection from blunt force trauma, you need a mouth guard that fits to your unique dentition.
Sometimes, a tooth is cracked or broken by a seemingly mundane act, like biting on a piece of ice. Using teeth as tools to open bottles or packages makes you vulnerable to oral injury. Though enamel is durable, a persistent habit of biting or chewing hard objects incurs undue stress that can lead to a break. The safest practice is to use your teeth for chewing food only.
What to do for a dental injury
If you do experience a dental emergency such as a broken, dislodged, or knocked-out tooth, you must know how to handle the situation. Often, it is possible to replace the natural tooth when proper care is received right away.
• Call O’Brien Dental Care for prompt assistance.
• If a tooth is broken or knocked out, save whatever has been damaged.
• Handle a knocked-out tooth only by the crown. DO NOT TOUCH THE ROOT.
• Bring the tooth to our office in a cup of milk. If no milk is available, the tooth may be kept between the gums and cheek or in a glass of water, though this is not preferable.
• Apply pressure to stop bleeding, if there is any.
We can see you through an urgent dental problem with compassionate, friendly care. Call O’Brien Dental Care a (952) 445-6657.