Traumatic dental injuries from sports or auto accidents are not uncommon. You can also get such an injury when you slip and fall or bump your head. When you have a dental emergency, you need professional care as soon as possible. Otherwise, you could end up with missing teeth or chronic pain.
What Are Traumatic Dental Injuries?
When your mouth sustains an impact, such as from a car accident or while playing sports, you could experience oral injuries. These include chipped or cracked teeth, loosened teeth, or lost teeth. You may also have damage to the surrounding teeth that you may not be aware of.
Your dentist will examine your entire mouth to identify such damage. You will likely have cuts or abrasions around the affected teeth, which may be painful. Your dentist can prescribe pain medication as well as provide emergency care.
Why Do Traumatic Dental Injuries Need Immediate Care?
If you have sustained damage to a tooth, immediate dental care can save it. Treating the incident as a dental emergency is the smartest response to an injury incident.
The longer you wait to seek dental care, the greater your risk of permanent tooth loss. If you get professional help in 30 minutes or less, you stand a better chance of saving your tooth.
Two factors are at work as the clock ticks following an injury. If you lost a tooth, it has a better chance of surviving if your dentist can reposition it in your mouth quickly. If you have loose teeth, immediate care lessens the chance that your mouth will begin rejecting those teeth through root reabsorption.
You may not think losing a single tooth is that big of a problem. However, it can affect your oral health as well as your self-confidence. You are at risk of a receding gum line where the tooth is missing. Also, if more than one tooth is gone, this may cause your face to sag. You may avoid smiling for fear that others will see the gap in your smile.
Depending upon the position of your missing tooth, you may find chewing more difficult. You could develop a speech problem.
What to Do in a Traumatic Dental Injuries Emergency
Taking the correct action in a dental emergency is critical to your recovery. Steps to follow include:
- Locating the tooth or the pieces that broke off
- Picking it up by the crown, taking care not to touch the root
- Carefully rinsing it in warm water
- Replacing the tooth in the socket if you can
- If not, placing it in a small jar of milk, lightly salted water, or saliva to keep it moist
- Taking it to your emergency dental appointment
You also need to take care of yourself following a traumatic dental injury. Rinse your mouth and apply a clean cloth to the affected gum. Apply direct pressure until any bleeding stops. If possible, use an ice pack on the outside to contain swelling.
What to Expect at the Dentist With Traumatic Dental Injuries
When you call your dentist with an emergency, the clinic should be able to get you in right away. When you arrive at the office, be sure to give your lost tooth to the team that will handle your care. If you are in pain, they will provide medication.
For the procedure itself, you may receive sedation if needed. Otherwise, the dentist will provide an oral anesthetic to ensure your treatment is pain-free. At Lovett Dental Corpus Christi, we provide sedation options and multidisciplinary dentistry, including:
- Tooth extractions
- Root canals
- Dental fillings and sealants
- Specialty dental services
- Dental implants
How We Can Help With Traumatic Dental Injuries
When you have a dental emergency, Lovett Dental Corpus Christi can help. Our caring professionals provide holistic dental care for injuries that cannot wait. We also offer ongoing maintenance to keep your teeth healthy. Contact Lovett Dental Corpus Christi at 361-986-1117 today.