Can You Handle A Dental Emergency?

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At the Center for Dental Anesthesia in Alexandria, we hope you never experience a serious dental emergency. It’s critical, however, to know what to do in such a situation. Here is a quiz on dental emergencies and other oral problems.

1. One of the wires on your braces breaks. What do you do?

a. Cut off the loose piece.
b. Put a piece of orthodontic wax on the end if it is irritating your tongue or gums. Schedule an appointment right away with your orthodontist to have it fixed.
c. If the wire has cut your gums, rinse with a solution of salt and water.

Both b and c are correct. If you don’t have a piece of orthodontic wax, you can use a cotton ball to cover the sharp end. If you cut off the loose end of the wire, you risk swallowing it.

2. Your five-year-old falls off his bike, hits his face on the sidewalk, and knocks out a tooth. What do you do before driving immediately to the nearest dental office or ER?

a. Put the tooth back in the socket.
b. If the tooth is dirty, scrub it with a brush.
c. Put the tooth in milk.

Your response depends on whether it is a baby tooth or permanent tooth. If a permanent tooth is knocked out, it may be successfully re-implanted if done rapidly.

Make sure you only hold the tooth by the crown; never touch the root. If the tooth is dirty, rinse it gently with water being careful not to brush off any tissue attached. It is best to reinsert the tooth into the socket. This may not be possible with younger children.

Because it is critical to keep the tooth from drying out on your way to your dentist or nearest emergency room, you can put the tooth in a cup of milk. Baby teeth should not be reinserted because it can potentially damage the emerging tooth.

3. You lose a filling and the tooth starts hurting. After scheduling an appointment with your Alexandria dentist, what do you do in the meantime?

a. Save the filling.
b. Take an over-the-counter pain reliever.
c. Put an aspirin on the tooth.

Both a and b are correct. Though your dentist can’t use the same filling to repair the problem, it may reveal useful information about the cause of the separation. Never put an aspirin on a tooth because the acid in it could irritate your gums.

4. One of your teeth suddenly darkens. What are the possible causes?

a. The nerve inside the tooth is damaged.
b. It is a side effect of a medication you are taking.
c. Gum disease.
d. An infection.

The answer is all of the above.

For any dental emergency or other oral condition, call the Center for Dental Anesthesia in Alexandria. We provide emergency dental care and family dentistry. Make an appointment today.

Contact Center for Dental Anesthesia:

703-379-6400

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

5284 Dawes Ave
Alexandria, Virginia
22311

 


5 Simple Ways To Avoid A Cracked Tooth

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Cracked teeth can be painful, unattractive, and pricey to repair. They can also be an emergency requiring immediate dental care. This post from the Center for Dental Anesthesia dental contains an easy-to-follow list of tips to keep your teeth whole and strong.

1. Don’t chew on hard substances. Mind-blowing, right? People should steer clear of ice, hard candies, hard nuts, popcorn, and beef jerky. Watch out for stone fruits—that peach may be soft but if you bite hard into the stone, you could damage a tooth.

2. It is vital to protect your teeth while engaging in any physical activity where your mouth can be hit. If you enjoy pick-up basketball games, indoor soccer leagues, rec center flag football, and many other activities, you should wear a well-fitting mouth protector.

3. Don’t use your teeth as a tool. Locate a pair of scissors to open a package or rip the price tag off a new piece of clothing with your teeth. Use a nutcracker for nuts. A quality dental crown can cost hundreds of dollars.

4. Most people know that grinding your teeth is dangerous, but did you know that it can lead to a cracked tooth? If you know or suspect that you are a tooth grinder, speak with your dentist so you can address the problem with stress reduction techniques and/or a mouth guard. Having headaches or jaw pain frequently can be a symptom of teeth grinding.

5. Lastly, make sure that you visit us for regular check-ups and cleanings. We can alert you to conditions that might predispose you to cracked teeth, such as having an uneven chewing surface or brittle teeth. We may also discover tiny cracks you aren’t aware of, and repair them before more damage ensues.

If you already have a cracked tooth, never fear! Treatment is available for cracks small and large. The Center for Dental Anesthesia in Alexandria provides cosmetic dentistry that restores smiles. We also provide emergency dental care. Keep our number handy, and make an appointment with us today.

Contact Center for Dental Anesthesia:

703-379-6400

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

5284 Dawes Ave
Alexandria, Virginia
22311