Did you chip off a front tooth while eating breakfast? Or, did you simply open your mouth to ask a question, only to find that one of your teeth was missing? If you are in any way concerned about dental emergencies, here’s what you need to know.
First, consider the severity of your dental emergency. Just like any other part of the body, teeth can break or chip off in two ways: severe and not very severe. These are called classifications one and two dental emergencies. Class 1 dental emergencies include anything from a tooth that has been knocked out completely as well as a tooth that is hanging on by a thread of enamel. Class 2 dental emergencies include teeth that are chipped, whether they’re broken in half or not, and any cuts to the gums. As you may have guessed, class 1 dental emergencies are more serious than class 2 dental emergencies.
First off, do NOT stick the tooth back into the socket if it’s a class 1 emergency! Doing so will increase the bleeding and could cause further damage to the tooth or even the jawbone. If you are unable to find your tooth, rinse it off with water and put it in a small container of milk (or saliva). If you are experiencing pain, try taking ibuprofen or other painkillers to reduce swelling.
There are a few things you can do if it’s a class 2 dental emergency. If the tooth is just chipped, take some superglue and apply it to the broken edge of the tooth as close as possible to its original position. Be sure not to use too much glue, and avoid getting it on the gums. If the tooth is broken in half, hold it together with a bandage or dental floss and make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.
If you are experiencing a dental emergency, do not hesitate to call your dentist’s office. Many dentists offer 24-hour emergency services, and some may even be available on the weekends. If you are unable to get in touch with your dentist, try looking for a 24-hour emergency dentist in your area. Just be sure to call ahead to make sure they can see you!
Hopefully you will never experience a dental emergency, but it’s important to know what to do just in case. Be sure to keep these tips in mind, and don’t forget to brush and floss your teeth twice a day!