If your home is like many in America, you probably don’t have a dental emergency kit handy. While you may never expect it to happen to you, 1 in 6 Americans has a dental emergency annually. A friendly game of football or eating popcorn at the movies can lead to a broken tooth. No matter the issue, time is of the utmost importance. It’s best to plan for the unexpected to save valuable time until you can get to an emergency dentist. Here’s what to include in your dental emergency first aid kit to make a stressful situation a little easier.
1. General Dental Supplies
You don’t need bandaids for your smile’s emergency kit, but there are a few essential items you should include:
- Medical-Grade Gloves: Gloves help stop the spread of germs and infections, which is important when placing your hands in your mouth or that of a loved one.
- Dental Mirror: You have many dark areas in your mouth, which can be difficult to see when looking in the mirror. A dental mirror with a light will ensure you can get a good look at the situation.
- Gauze Pads: Pack gauze pads or cotton balls in a clean bag or case to stop any bleeding.
2. Pain Relievers
Nothing is worse than a relentless toothache. You can treat discomfort by including a few pain-relief options in your kit:
- Orajel: The topical anesthetic can decrease pain from soft tissue injuries or teething.
- Ice Pack: A cold compress can reduce swelling and bruising, while also numbing the area temporarily.
- OTC Pain Reliever: An over-the-counter pain reliever can ease your discomfort.
- Salt and Water: Gargling with salt water can kill bacteria while also decreasing inflammation and pain to keep you comfortable until your appointment.
Don’t Wait to See a Dentist
Although no one has time for an unplanned dental appointment, do not wait to see your dentist. If you delay treatment, a minor issue can lead to tooth loss. If the unexpected should happen, don’t panic!
Access the situation and provide the appropriate first aid, like controlling any bleeding. Contact your dentist and explain the situation for an appointment. Manage any pain and keep your mouth clean. It’s best to eat softer foods and chew on the opposite side of your mouth until after seeing your dentist.
Your emergency dentist will address any pain and examine your mouth to create the personalized plan you need to save your tooth. They’ll provide the quick, comfortable care you need, so you can get back to your day.
About Dr. Donald Marks
Dr. Marks achieved his dental degree from the University of Pittsburgh and has regularly continued his education in advanced services to treat the most complex oral health issues, like dental emergencies. He is a member of various professional organizations, including the American Dental Association and the Pennsylvania Dental Association. If you need a dentist in a hurry, contact our office today for an appointment.