If you’ve cracked a tooth, first you need to determine the extent of the damage. A simple chipped tooth or a small crack is not a medical emergency. You should be cautious about chewing, especially hard foods.
It may also be helpful to try taking some over the counter pain medications to help with any potential pain. A chipped or cracked tooth should be inspected by a dentist, but you may not need an emergency appointment if it is not severe. However,
if you have a broken tooth, that’s a different story. A broken tooth usually the product of a cavity or external event. In the event of a broken tooth, you should contact your dentist immediately and seek medical attention.
If you’ve broken a tooth, contact your dentist immediately. Set up an emergency appointment as soon as possible. Depending on the severity of the break, you may need to see a dentist within the day. Rinse out your mouth with warm water. Even better, try warm salt water to clean out the wound. Apply a cold compress to your cheek or the area around the wounded tooth. There may be swelling and redness in or around the mouth. A cold compress will help to reduce swelling and reduce and relieve pain. Use gauze or clean rag to soak up the blood. A broken tooth can result in a lot of blood. The bleeding should not last more than about 10 minutes.
If you are not in a place where you can see a dentist immediately, dental cement can be used in a pinch. This can be found at most local drug stores. Dental cement will help to solidify the tooth until a dentist can look at it. You may also want to take some over the counter pain medication to help manage the pain until you receive medical attention.
Once you do see a dentist, the course of action will be determined by the severity of the situation. If it’s a chipped tooth, the dentist may smooth or polish the tooth to camouflage it. If it’s a bad chip, the dentist may suggest a filling.
If the tooth is cracked, you may just need a filling is it’s small. If it’s a deep crack, you may need a crown or root canal. The dentist will need to examine the tooth to determine the best option.
In the case of a broken tooth, the dentist will likely suggest a crown. If the break goes down to the root, you may need root canal surgery.
Broken, cracked, or chipped teeth can be painful. They can also be caused by a variety of things. Whether it’s just a piece of hard candy or a hit to the head, teeth can easily be damaged. If you’ve experienced any of these things, come see us at Fort Union Family Dental for the best care available!