There’s truly no time like summertime. The sun is shining down in all its splendor as laughter fills the air. All of the kids are out of school, and the pool water shimmers in the heat, ready to be enjoyed. From road trips to movie nights, there’s simply something magical about the season.
The last thing you want to happen is for an emergency to occur. Unfortunately, the freedom and excitement of summer can sometimes be a conducive environment for injury. Other times, emergencies just happen—they’re an unavoidable part of life, especially, it seems, when kids are involved.
When it comes to dental emergencies, it’s important to be prepared. Often, these emergencies require the attention of a dentist, not an emergency room doctor. Knowing what to do in case of a dental emergency is vital to ensuring damage is minimized and the problem is fixed as quickly as possible!
Tooth Knocked Out
The best course of action when dealing with a knocked-out tooth depends on one key question—is it a baby tooth or an adult tooth? Once you’ve determined what kind of tooth it is, you can proceed in the way that is right for the situation.
If it’s a baby tooth, find the tooth and get to the dentist. In the time between the tooth being knocked out and examined by the dentist, keep it as most as possible. Depending on whether the whole tooth came out or if it broke, the dentist may choose to implant it, take no action, or proceed as they see fit according to the unique circumstances.
If the knocked-out tooth is an adult tooth, you will want to follow the same procedure. Find the tooth and keep it moist. Contact your dentist and see them as soon as possible.
Chipped or Cracked Tooth
The severity of a chipped or cracked tooth can vary significantly. Sometimes, a chip is very minor and causes no pain. In situations such as these, it can be okay to wait a few days before visiting your dentist. If the chip is significant, though, it is likely to cause sensitivity and/or pain. It may even cut your gums or other soft tissue in your mouth. In any of these cases, you will want to see your dentist as soon as possible.
Cracked teeth are more likely to cause pain and sensitivity and, therefore, require more immediate attention. You can apply a cold compress to reduce swelling until you are able to see your dentist!
The action you should take for a toothache depends, again, on the severity of the situation. For a mild or common toothache, simply rinse with warm water and ensure there is nothing caught between your teeth. If, however, the pain is severe in your teeth or gums, you should contact and visit your dentist immediately. Such pain can be indicative of a dangerous infection or other serious health conditions.
The best way to prepare for summer dental emergencies is to try to avoid them entirely. Accidents are bound to happen and aren’t always avoidable, but by implementing a few helpful tips, you can minimize the potential for summer dental emergencies.
For example, put a few rules in place when your kids are playing outside, engaging in sports, or are using the pool. Make sure everyone knows the rules and adheres to them—yes, even you! You can also plan healthy summer snacks and emphasize that oral hygiene habits don’t slip during the summer season.
In case of a dental emergency, you should know who to contact. This is typically your dentist, who will either address your situation directly or recommend you to someone who can!