Whether you’ve been playing contact sports in the backyard or eating your favorite snack, many patients suffer damage to their mouths outside of normal dental business hours. These accidents might cause you to wonder what to do if you have a dental emergency on the weekend. Learn what counts as a dental emergency and what doesn’t from the most experienced emergency dentist in Palm Beach Gardens.
What Counts as a Dental Emergency?
While many dental problems feel like they need immediate attention, some emergencies have more urgency than others. Some symptoms that indicate a more serious problem include the following.
Your mouth might bleed from your gums, tongue, or even teeth for a number of reasons. A hard blow to the mouth might loosen teeth, while eating too quickly may result in biting your tongue hard enough to draw blood.
Knocked Out Tooth
If a tooth gets knocked out during play or after a fall, quick action could help your tooth become reattached to its root. After finding the knocked-out tooth, lift it by its crown. Get a cup of milk, plug up your sink so you don’t lose any pieces, then rinse the tooth in milk (do NOT use tap water).
Before heading to an emergency dentist, put the tooth back into its socket and bite down on it with a piece of gauze between them.
Swelling in the Mouth
Swelling gums combined with pain and sensitivity around the swollen parts could indicate a deadly infection. Tooth abscesses often cause these infections, making it difficult to eat, drink, or talk until dental treatment.
Jaw Injury or Facial Fracture
All of the above may stem from a jaw injury or facial fractures, both of which could cause many more issues than bleeding, swelling, or lost teeth. If you believe you, a family member, or a friend has sustained a facial injury, visit an emergency dentist.
What Doesn’t Count as a Dental Emergency?
Before worrying about what to do if you have a dental emergency on the weekend, consider if you can take care of your tooth problem at home. For non-urgent dental problems, you can try to hold off pain and swelling until the following week.
Eating hard foods like candy and nuts can easily result in a chipped tooth. As long as your chipped tooth doesn’t cause severe pain, you can wait until Monday before getting dental assistance.
Dull, Endurable Toothaches
Some toothaches hurt but don’t require immediate attention. If you can get through the weekend on over-the-counter pain medication, you won’t need an emergency dentist.
Debris Stuck Between the Teeth
While eating, food can lodge itself between your teeth, creating an irritating discomfort. While the most common culprit is popcorn, you can also get seed remnants and bits of candy stuck between them.
How to Treat Non-Urgent Tooth Injuries
While waiting to go to the dentist during the week, you can take action to help your teeth feel better at home. You can use over-the-counter pain relievers like NSAIDs, rinse your mouth with warm water and salt, and use warm or cold compresses to help reduce swelling and pain.
You should also maintain normal dental hygiene, ensuring that you floss and brush your teeth twice a day. Those who have bits of food stuck between their teeth might find this especially useful, as toothbrush bristles and tooth floss can help dislodge the debris.
Schedule a Dental Appointment in Palm Beach Gardens, FL
A painful tooth affects not only how you eat and speak but can disrupt your sleep and lead to deep, life-changing infections. The above answers to what to do if you have a dental emergency on the weekend may guide you to wait until the following week for dental care. If you need help with dental emergencies in Palm Beach Gardens, FL, call Dr. Mark L. Civin at (561) 624-2224.