How to Handle Common Dental Emergencies – Longmont, CO

Protecting Your Smile Until You Reach Us

Very few things are as frightening as a dental emergency arising out of nowhere. However, it’s imperative that you remain calm and collected so that you can make wise decisions. While our team can provide basic first-aid advice over the phone, it’s beneficial if you have some of that information in your head beforehand so you can better handle the situation until you reach your dentist. Whatever your situation may be, call us as soon as you can to schedule an appointment. In the meantime, here are some tips on how to handle common dental emergencies from your Longmont, CO emergency dentist.

Woman in need of emergency dentistry holding cheek in pain

Something Stuck Between the Teeth

Woman holding cheek before emergency dentistry

Bits of food or other debris getting trapped between your teeth can result in a monster of a toothache as well as damaged gums. First, try rinsing your mouth out with warm water to soothe your gums and loosen the object a bit. Then, you can use wax-coated dental floss to remove the debris. Tie a knot in it and then move it back and forth around the area. If you’re still unable to remove the object, call our Longmont dental office right away. Whatever you do, do not attempt to get the object out using a toothpick or other sharp item, as you could scratch your teeth or pierce your gums.

A Partially Dislodged Tooth

Man with partial dislodge tooth holding cheek in pain

An extruded tooth is one that has been partially dislodged; that is, it has been knocked out of its socket, but not all the way. For the best chance of a successful reattachment, visit our dental office within an hour of the incident. Until you reach our dental office, take an over-the-counter pain medication like ibuprofen, or apply a cold compress to your cheek to reduce pain. You can try to gently push the tooth back into its socket, but you need to be extremely careful. Avoid chewing or biting with the affected tooth at all costs.

Abscess or Tooth Infection

Woman looking at infected tooth in  mirror

A dental abscess is a pocket of pus that has formed, typically in the gums or the tooth root, as a result of an infection. Untreated abscesses can seriously damage your gums and surrounding teeth. It could even lead to tooth loss or the infection spreading to other parts of your body. If you notice any symptoms of an abscess (like fever, persistent toothache, facial swelling, or swollen lymph nodes under your jaw), you need urgent treatment. To ease the pain until then, you can rinse with saltwater several times a day.

Soft Tissue Injury

Woman pointing to a soft tissue injury

For bleeding gums, lips, cheek, or tongue, first rinse with saltwater. Then, apply firm pressure with a piece of gauze or cloth to the area for 15-20 minutes. Once the bleeding has stopped, you can apply a cold compress in 10-minute intervals. However, if the bleeding doesn’t stop, you need to seek urgent medical attention.

If any of the above situations describe what you’re going through, don’t hesitate to contact your emergency dentist right away. We’ll do our utmost to heal your smile!