May 18, 2020
The best way to protect yourself and others from COVID-19 is to practice social distancing. Thankfully, your Blaine dentist is still treating dental emergencies if you find yourself in need of immediate dental care. However, it may be safer for you to treat some situations at home without increasing your risk of exposure to the coronavirus. Read on to find out which dental symptoms you can manage in quarantine and which ones need urgent professional attention.
Handling Non-Urgent Dental Emergencies at Home
Any unusual, uncomfortable, or worrying dental symptoms should be seen by your dentist right away. To limit your trips outside during the pandemic however, you may be able to treat non-urgent issues at home, like:
- Slightly damaged tooth or filling: A minimally chipped or cracked tooth, filling, or dental crown can be covered with a piece of wet sugarless gum or dental wax. This protects the exposed inner layers of the tooth from further damage, infection, and sensitivity.
- Inflamed, easily bleeding gums: These symptoms are typically associated with a serious bacterial infection known as gum disease. Without periodontal therapy from your dentist, it can lead to tooth loss and jawbone damage. To combat the bacteria and ease discomfort until you can make an appointment, rinse with saltwater or specialized mouthwash every day.
- Mild to moderate toothache: There are many ways to treat tooth pain at home, including flossing, using store-bought pain relievers, applying ice, rinsing with saltwater or diluted hydrogen peroxide, applying clove oil, and using desensitizing toothpaste.
Dental Emergencies That Need Urgent Care
If you are in danger of losing a tooth or are suffering from a serious infection, you need to seek professional care right away. Dental professionals are keeping their practice exceptionally germ free in order to safely treat emergencies like:
- Broken or fractured tooth: When a tooth is broken, the sensitive inner layers are exposed. It needs to be repaired right away to prevent any further damage or serious infection.
- Loose or knocked-out permanent tooth: A loose permanent tooth needs to be stabilized right away to keep it in place. If it falls out, its chances of successful reattachment diminish after 30 minutes.
- Intense toothache or dental abscess: A small bump on the gums, intense tooth pain, fever, fatigue, and swelling are all symptoms of a serious dental infection. If left untreated, it could become life-threatening, so call your dentist immediately if your toothache is accompanied by any of these warning signs.
Now more than ever, it’s essential to take care of our smiles and be careful to avoid dental emergencies. However, knowing which dental symptoms require urgent care can help you make the right decisions while staying healthy in the COVID-19 pandemic.
About the Author
At Imagine Smiles in Blaine, MN, we prioritize health, comfort, and safety. Dr. Douglas Green and his team have always met and exceeded the ambitious sanitation standards set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to maintain a clean practice. Even so, he has been monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic closely and bolstering his infection control protocols accordingly. He has established a variety of extra precautions to ensure his patients and staff are as safe as possible during treatment in the pandemic. If you have urgent dental pain, please don’t hesitate to reach him via his website or at (763) 269-8650.
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