SHOULD I CALL OR CAN IT WAIT?
There may be a time when you may notice a certain level of a tooth, gum or jaw discomfort and need to decide whether to call our office. The presence of pain most often indicates an underlying condition that, at the very least, should be diagnosed by one of our doctors. If the pain is very mild and intermittent, you may be able to wait until our office is open during normal business hours.
If your discomfort exists during those business hours, don’t wait ‘til the last minute, as we do encourage you to call. Our office is open six days a week and if you call before 10 am, we can see you that same day. Every case, however, is unique and cannot be fully diagnosed by phone call alone. We will make every effort to provide a recommendation for appropriate care in the short term on an emergency basis so that you can address any issue that arises and take comfort knowing appropriate and professional guidance is available. We may need to schedule follow-up appointments to address any underlying condition.
FIRST AID TIPS FOR DENTAL EMERGENCIES
Apply ice to bruised areas. If there is bleeding apply firm but gentle pressure with a clean gauze or cloth. If bleeding does not stop after 15 minutes or it cannot be controlled by simple pressure, you may have to go to the hospital emergency room.
Find the tooth. Handle the tooth by the top (crown), not the root portion. You may rinse the tooth, but do not clean or handle the tooth unnecessarily. Try to reinsert it into its socket. Hold the tooth in place by biting on a clean gauze or cloth. If you cannot reinsert the tooth, transport the tooth in a cup containing milk or water. Call the dentist immediately. Time is a critical factor in saving the tooth.
Clean the area around the sore tooth thoroughly. Rinse the mouth vigorously with warm salt water or use dental floss to dislodge trapped food or debris. Do not place aspirin on the gum or on the aching tooth. If the face is swollen, apply a cold compress. Take acetaminophen for pain and call the dentist as soon as possible.
Rinse dirt from the injured area with warm water. Place cold compresses over the face in the area of the injury. Locate and save any broken tooth fragments. Call the dentist immediately.
Call the dentist immediately and bring the crown with you to the dental appointment. If you can gently place the crown back over the tooth. You can use an over-the-counter dental adhesive from a local drug store to temporarily hold it in place.
As always, prevention is the best cure. In sports, you should always wear a custom mouth guard. Don’t eat hard items like candy, or chew on ice. Never use your teeth to open bottles, cans or packages. Remember, your teeth are not tools. At Advanced DDS, your Garden City Dentist, we are prepared to handle virtually any dental emergency and encourage you to call us at 516-825-1100 regarding any dental emergency issue that may arise.