Emergency Advice Guide
How to manage toothache
If there is a hole in the tooth, or a tooth has cracked causing discomfort and is now sensitive or sharp, a temporary filling can be packed into the space. These are widely available from supermarkets and pharmacies but are temporary and not to be used long-term. Good cleaning with fluoride toothpaste and reducing sugar intake can help stop any potential decay getting worse. Desensitising/sensitive toothpaste like Sensodyne repair and protect can also help. if you rub the toothpaste directly onto the affected area and do not rinse afterwards. Anaesthetic gels such as Orajel can also help ease pain.
How to manage painful Wisdom teeth
Wisdom tooth pain is usually due to inflammation of the gum over the erupting tooth, which can be worsened by trauma from biting. Most flare ups can be managed with thorough home care and should settle in a few days to a week. If you have difficulty swallowing, swelling in your face or cheek, or difficulty opening your mouth, call your dentist. You may need antibiotics if you have an infection or a minor infection that is
• Ensure excellent cleaning – Even if it is painful to brush, the area must be kept clean to encourage healing.
• Use a warm salt water mouthwash – Dissolve a tea spoon salt in a cup of boiled water that has been allowed to cool. Corsodyl mouthwash can also be used, but it may cause staining if used for more than a week.
• Soft diet – Eating soft foods will reduce the chance of trauma from biting.
• Painkillers – You can take Ibuprofen or paracetamol to reduce inflammation but ensure you follow the instructions on the packet.
How to manage pain or healing after an extraction
If you’re feeling pain after an extraction, you should take regular painkillers for up to seven days. It is normal for pain to be at its worst on day three or four. We cannot provide antibiotics for pain after extractions unless an infection is present. Some pink spit/oozing is normal after an extraction, but if the socket is bleeding
freely, bite hard on gauze or a clean hankie for 20 minutes. If bleeding has not stopped call your dentist for further advice.
If you smoke or rinse too soon after an extraction, you risk a dry socket and this can be very painful, with regular painkillers unlikely to be effective. If this happens, you should call your dentist to seek an emergency appointment. Antibiotics will not solve this, as a dressing is needed to cover the exposed bone.
How to manage bleeding gums Bleeding gums are not a dental emergency as this is most commonly associated with gum disease,and will not stop until brushing improves. Brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste for two minutes, concentrating especially on the areas that are bleeding. Ensure that you also use floss or interdental brushes to clean between your teeth every day.
How to manage ulcers
Although painful, most ulcers will heal within 7-10 days. Non healing ulcers/oral lesions present for more than three weeks should be assessed by a dentist or doctor.
• Ensure excellent cleaning – even if it’s too painful to brush. The mouth must be kept clean to encourage healing and prevent more ulcers forming. Be gentle and use a soft/baby toothbrush.
• Soft diet -soft food will reduce trauma from biting
• Difflam (Benzydamine) spray or mouthwash – Use this as needed to treat your sore mouth.
• Denture adhesives – if rubbing dentures are causing your ulcers, adhesives like Fixodent may help secure a loose denture. Any sharp edges may be very carefully removed using an emery board. It is advisable to remove dentures where possible if they’re causing trauma.
• Use a warm salt water mouthwash – Dissolve a tea spoon salt in a cup of boiled water that has been allowed to cool. Corsodyl mouthwash can also be used, but it may cause staining if used for more than a week
• Painkillers -ibuprufen or paracetamol following packet instructions.
How to manage a lost crown
If you lose a crown, you can attempt to re-cement it at home ONLY if you feel confident to do so
• Remove any debris from the crown, you can use something like the tip of a
paperclip to scrape the old cement away. Clean your tooth thoroughly. All debris must be removed from both the crown and the tooth for it to seat properly.
• Check the crown fits without cement. Check that the bite feels correct, if the tooth feels too tall, it is not fitted correctly, double check for debris. NEVER force a crown or post onto or into your tooth, this can cause the root to fracture. If you cannot get the crown to fit, keep the tooth as clean as possible and wait to see your dentist.
• Crowns should be replaced using a dental cement from a pharmacy like Recap it. DO NOT USE SUPERGLUE or FIXADENT to fit your crown.
• Once you are have practiced placing the crown, dry the tooth and crown, mix the cement as instructed on the packet and fill the crown. Place the crown directly onto the tooth. Bite firmly to press it into place.
• Remove any extra cement with a toothpick and floss between your teeth to make sure they do not stick together.
Whilst these won’t cover every issue, if you follow these tips you can ensure you will keep your mouth as healthy as possible until you can see your dentist again. We hope that you find all of the above advice useful, however; should you be unsure on any of the above, please do not hesitate to contact our team and we will do our very best to help as we are still at the end of a phone.
Call us on 01270 584 776 for advice or click the button below.