Common Dental Emergencies and First Aid
A dental emergency is defined as any problem related to and affecting teeth or related tissues. It requires immediate response to prevent natural, functional, or Visual complications. Pain is commonly the most frequent presenting complaint.
Types Of Dental Emergencies:
- Biologically mediated dental emergencies: These include bacterial, viral, or fungal infections.
- Mechanically mediated dental emergencies: These refer to tooth fracture, luxation, and avulsion. Sometimes dental treatment leads to periodontal complications and pain.
Common Dental Emergencies:
- Fall On Mouth: If anyone has fallen on the face side, it increases the chance of tooth fracture. In many accident cases, lips get ruptured with profound bleeding. Sometimes the fractured tooth pierces inside the lips. It all creates a dental emergency situation.
- Knocked-Out Tooth: Experiencing one or more teeth coming out of the socket is an emergency. This occurs due to getting hit in the face. Sometimes having your jaw impact a hard object. Saving the knocked-out teeth and going to a dentist quickly, the teeth may be able to be reimplanted.
- Severe Toothache: If the tooth pain is unbearable it calls for an urgent medical intervention. The magnitude of pain and discomfort govern the difference in how you should handle it.
- Infections: Infections are not going to go away on their own. It’s a sign that something is seriously wrong with the oral cavity.
- Mouth Sores: They can range from canker sores to food, hand, and mouth disease. A sore in your mouth can also be a sign of gum disease. While mouth sores are not life-threatening, they can be dangerous and very painful if left untreated.
- Abscessed Gums: Abscessed gums are a common type of dental emergency. The gum abscess looks like a pimple in earlier stages. An abscess usually means tooth or gums are infected. It gets treated by a root canal or an extraction.
- Broken Teeth: A broken tooth is annoying but usually not life-threatening. It all depends on how the tooth was broken and how much broke off. If it’s only a slight chip, it will not create much difficulty. If the teeth have broken more than 50% of the tooth length it is an emergency.
- Bleeding Gums: Bleeding inside the oral cavity should not be taken lightly. Bleeding is usually a primary sign of gum ailment or gingivitis. Blood in the saliva might indicate an advanced stage of cancer or an extremely advanced stage of gum disease.
- Swelling: Swelling is one of the common dental emergencies. It is never a good sign. It indicates a serious dental infection.
First Aid for Dental Emergencies:
It is of paramount importance to keep a Dental First Aid kit for any emergencies that might arise suddenly. Being prepared for any emergency is always the first step towards preventing the problem from further complications. One can either buy a ready kit or can make own by checking with the dentist on the exact requirements.
- Cold Compresses and Pain Medications: For mouth injuries, swelling, and toothaches, a wet washcloth or ice pack to the side of the face acts as a painkiller. Prescribed pain medication can be taken to reduce pain while traveling to the hospital.
- Find Knocked-out Tooth/Chips If Possible: Attempt to find the pieces or the knocked-out tooth. Preserve them for reimplantation or attachment. In the case of teeth that have been taken out from the root due to force, it is always advisable not to touch the root.
- Rinsing the Mouth: Mouth injuries, oral infections, abscesses, and toothaches may benefit from being rinsed with warm salt water. Rinsing the mouth helps alleviate the pain and draws out any infection.
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