What should I do in a Dental Emergency?
If you are in pain and/or require immediate treatment, please call us on (08) 8347 1199 to book an emergency appointment.
- Rinse your mouth with warm water and removing the debris stuck from the cavity. Dental floss can be used to remove debris in-between teeth.
- If swelling is already present, use a cold compress and take pain killers if the pain is intolerable. Just remember to take one that you know is safe for you. Do not put the pain killer directly on your aching tooth or gums as it may burn the gum tissue.
A tooth is knocked out
- Stay calm and find the actual tooth.
- Pick the tooth up by the crown (the top). Try not to touch the root.
- If the tooth is dirty rinse it in milk or saline solution if available. If not, rinse briefly (only a few seconds) in water to remove dirt and debris.
- If the person is conscious, hold the clean tooth by the crown and put it back into place using the other teeth as a guide. Use light pressure only.
- Ask the patient to gently bite on a soft cloth to hold the tooth in place.
- Seek immediate dental advice. Time is critical in saving the tooth so contact the dentist immediately for an emergency appointment.
- If you can't find the tooth, take the patient to a dentist while others continue to search.
- If found, put the tooth in milk (if possible) or seal in plastic wrap and take to the dental clinic immediately.
- Do not put a baby tooth back into the mouth.
- Most children under five years have baby teeth only.
- If in doubt, place the tooth in milk and take it and your child to seek dental advice.
- Transport the tooth in water
- Scrape or scrub the root surface
- Allow the tooth to dry out
- Delay seeking dental treatment/advice.
- Clean the injured area with clean, warm water. If the injury is caused by a blow and swelling is present, put a cold compress over the area of the swelling to minimize it.
- Place any broken pieces of tooth in milk. Don’t let the pieces dry out. If milk is not available wrap in plastic wrap for transportation.
- Try to look for all the missing tooth fragments. Make sure to keep these fragments from getting dry. These fragments can be bonded back to the teeth.
- Seek dental advice as soon as possible.
Chipped, fractured or cracked tooth
- Immediately rinse the mouth with warm water to clean the area. Put cold compresses on the face to keep any swelling down.
- Visit your dentist as soon as possible.
Bitten lip, tongue or cheek
- This often occurs during eating or as a result of a fall.
- Clean the area gently with warm, salty water.
- Apply direct pressure to the bleeding area with a clean cloth. If there is any swelling, apply a cold compress.
- If bleeding continues after about 15 minutes, seek dental or medical advice.
Objects stuck between teeth
- Try to gently remove wedged object with floss. Make sure to use it carefully because it can hurt the gums.
- Do not use items like wooden toothpicks. They may break.
- Seek dental advice if unsuccessful.
- This is a localised infection that usually forms at the root of the tooth or in the space between the teeth and gums. It's most commonly caused by severe dental decay.
- This painful condition can actually damage tissue and surrounding teeth and if left untreated, it can cause more widespread infection and may be life threatening.
- So it’s important to see your dentist as soon as possible.
- Regular warm salt water rinsing can also help alleviate discomfort until you’re able to see your dentist.
Lost filling or crown
- If a cavity develops underneath a filling or crown, it can become loose and eventually fall out. It can be rather painful because the exposed middle layer (dentine) of tooth will be sensitive to any hot or cold foods.
- A new filling or crown will be needed so visit your dentist as soon as you can for a solution.
How can you prevent a dental emergency?
- Wear a professionally fitted, custom-made mouthguard designed by your dentist when participating in sports or recreational activities.
- Avoid chewing ice, popcorn kernels and hard candy, all of which can crack a tooth.
- Use scissors, NEVER your teeth, to cut things.