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Dental Emergencies

Tooth knocked out – This is a very urgent problem and needs quick action. Gently rinse the tooth in milk or saline contact lens solution being careful to avoid touching the root. If you can, insert the tooth back into the socket. If not, store the tooth in milk or saline solution and head straight to the dental office.

Tongue biting – Apply direct pressure to the injured area with gauze or a clean cloth. You can use cold compresses for swelling. If the bleeding does not stop or if you think the injury is serious, head straight to the hospital emergency department.

Toothache – If a tooth hurts spontaneously, keeps you awake, or gives you an extreme response to hot and cold, you may have a tooth infection or abcess. Swelling is another sign of infection. Do not place aspirin directly on the tooth or gums. Rather, take Tylenol or Advil if necessary. Use cold compresses on swelling. Call the office for assistance.

Sensitivity to Temperature, Sweet, or Sour – These responses usually suggest reversible conditions like cavities, leaking fillings, or root surface sensitivity. Try salt rinses, desensitizing toothpaste, or simple avoidance of the area and see the dentist soon.

Broken tooth – rinse the area with salt water and examine it as best you can. The initial discomfort usually passes. You may have a sharp edge or sensitivity. Place some chewed sugarless gum over the broken part until you can see the dentist.

If you are experiencing these or other problems, call the office for advice and an appointment.