While many injuries are avoidable, accidents happen and the consequences to our teeth can be serious. The good news is that there are things that you can do to reduce the trauma of the dental injury.
If you are seeking help due to dental trauma during our business hours, call us now for an advice. We make treatment of dental trauma a priority.
If it happens outside our business hours, follow these steps:
- DO NOT PANIC! Stay calm. It helps you think more clearly and control the situation more easily. Reassure the person (and yourself!).
- If the area is bleeding, apply gentle pressure to the area with a piece of cold, wet gauze or clean cloth
- Hold an ice pack wrapped in a washcloth to the cheek or lip where injured to reduce swelling.
- Give paracetamol to relieve pain if needed
- Contact your dentist for an appointment ASAP
- If the tooth is chipped, collect any piece where possible and take it with you to the dentist
- If a baby tooth is knocked out completely, do not attempt to put the tooth back in the socket as it may damage the underlying growing permanent tooth
- If a permanent tooth is knocked out, time is the essence as a tooth rapidly loses its vitality as it leaves its socket. To give the best chance of keeping the tooth, do the following:
- Find the tooth. Hold it by the crown only as root surface has very delicate cells that keep the integrity of the root. Inspect if the tooth is clean
- If the tooth is free of debri, reposition in its socket in the right positon. Make sure it's the right way round. Once in, gently bite down on soft cloth or tissue, or use aluminium foil or your mouthguard to hold it in place.
- If the tooth is dirty, rinse it in milk or very quickly in water. DO NOT scrub the root surface. Reposition and stablise the tooth as described above.
- If you are not sure what to do, call your dentist and keep the tooth moist in a glass of milk or contact lens saline solution. Water is not a good medium to keep cells alive. Keeping the tooth in your mouth will be better than in a glass of water if you cannot find milk or saline.
Injured teeth require prompt and careful management to maximize the chance of survival and reduce future complications. Therefore it is extremely important to see a dentist ideally within the next hour to a day after the injury after the above step are taken
If the person is unconscious, call for help and seek/perform medical first aid (DRABC)
Prevention is always better than cure. If you or your child plays sports, be sure to wear a properly fitted mouthguard