- December 13, 2015
If you are in the middle of a dental emergency, please call us right away. You can reach Nashua Family Dentistry at 603-546-7460. Don’t delay. You can learn more about dental emergencies after you call.
If you are calling before noon, we will get you in today.
If you are calling after hours, our on-call doctor will advise you on what to do until we can meet in person.
For those of you who don’t need emergency dental care, now is a good time to learn what to do if it does happen.
We hope none of our patients in Southern New Hampshire ever need this particular dental service, but we are herein Nashua to provide it if they do.
Defining a dental emergency
Dental emergencies can happen any time. They can occur instantaneously, or they may develop over time.
If you are suffering from substantial pain in your mouth, jaw, or teeth after an accident, you should seek emergency dental care.
If someone or something strikes you in the mouth, you may have a tooth come out or come loose, or maybe just part of your tooth breaks or chips. Any of those situations should be treated as a dental emergency.
You also should seek emergency treatment if you are experiencing severe, lingering pain in your gums or teeth. Ditto of your gums are bleeding, but don’t seem to stop.
Your emergency may be the result of poor oral hygiene, ignoring a problem, or an unfortunate incident. No matter what, seek help as soon as you are able.
Handling an emergency
You probably won’t be sitting in a dentist’s chair when your emergency occurs. The quicker you can get in one, however, the better.
While you are waiting, here are some tips for dealing with different types of emergency situations:
- Toothache — Start by using dental floss or another interdental device to remove food particles that may have become stuck between your teeth and gums. Rinse with warm water after you do this.
If the pain continues, call your dentist to make an appointment.
DO NOT put aspirin on your gums. This can burn your gum tissue and cause a different kind of emergency.
- Broken or chipped tooth — Try to find the piece that has broken off. If you find it, rinse it in warm water, and rinse your mouth if you are bleeding.
It’s also a good idea to cover the broken tooth with gauze or wax. This may stop you from accidentally cutting the inside of your mouth or your tongue.
- Lost tooth — If your tooth falls out or gets knocked out, again you should try to find it. Pick it up by the crown, not the root. Then, clean the tooth.
If you can, fit the tooth back where it came out. If you can’t do this, then hold the tooth between your gums and teeth, or place it in milk until you can see the dentist. In some cases, the tooth can be placed back into your jawbone.
Another suggestion is to have an emergency tooth preservation kit. This is like a first aid kit for your mouth. These kits include a jar of solution that can help preserve your tooth if it is knocked out or comes loose. If you buy one, be sure it has an ADA Accepted seal.
- Broken jaw — If you believe you jaw is broken, get to the emergency room and see your dentist as soon as you are able.
If we could anticipate every emergency, then we would never have one. That is not the world where we live. You can take steps to reduce your risk of an emergency, however.
This starts with good oral hygiene. Brush your teeth twice a day for two minute each time. Be sure to scrub your teeth on all sides.
Also, remember to floss or use another interdental device once per day to clean between your teeth and between your teeth and gums.
Brushing and flossing help to remove plaque and the bacteria that cause plaque, which can lead to tooth decay and periodontal disease.
You also should make and keep appointments to see the dentist every six months for cleanings and exams. A professional cleaning will remove the plaque you couldn’t get with brushing and flossing alone. The exam makes it more likely that we will identify problems early. This way they can be treated before they turn into an emergency.
For athletes, wearing a custom-fitted mouthguard can save your teeth or minimize injuries if you are hit or fall on our mouth. We can make these mouthguards for you.
If you are having any emergency, call us as soon as possible.
If you are seeking preventive care, call us to make your next appointment (if you haven’t already done so). You can reach Nashua Family Dentistry by calling 603-546-7460 or by filling out our online form.