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Tips for Dental Emergencies

When you experience mouth pain or a tooth injury, it's important to seek care from your dentist as soon as possible to save your smile. Seeing a dentist within 30 minutes can be the difference between saving and losing a tooth.

These tips can help manage a dental emergency until you see a dentist:

Knocked-Out Tooth

Find the tooth immediately! Pick it up at the top (or crown) and be careful not to tough the tooth root. If you can, put the tooth back into its socket and gently hold it in place while biting down. Otherwise, put it in a glass of slightly salted tap water or cold milk without cleaning or scrubbing it. Take the tooth to your dentist, preferably within 30 minutes of the injury, and they may be able to place it back into your mouth.

Broken Tooth

Rinse your mouth with warm water to clean the area and soothe the tooth. Place an ice pack on the cheek nearest the injury to help keep the swelling down. See your dentist as soon as possible. 

Toothaches

Keep food away from the tooth that hurts. Rinse your mouth with warm water after eating and floss carefully. If your jaw is swollen, place an ice pack on the cheek that hurts. Do not put heat or aspirin on painful areas. Toothaches can have many causes, such as an unnoticed cavity, gum disease, a cracked tooth or a new filling that doesn't fit your bite correctly. See the dentist soon, especially if swelling is present. 

Mouth Sores

Avoid acidic foods, such as oranges and pineapples, which can sting sores. Often, sores in the mouth are canker sores, which are small ulcers. Call your dentist if your mouth sores persist for more than two weeks. Lumps or white patches in or around your mouth may indicate a more serious problem, so see your dentist immediately.

 Always keep your dentist's name and phone number with you as dental emergencies can happen at any time. Remember, seeing a dentist within 30 minutes can be the difference between saving and losing a tooth. Make sure your mouth and teeth are strong, healthy and free from decay by visiting the dentist regularly.