Dental emergencies come in a variety of forms, but they tend to have a few things in common: they hurt, they are frightening, and they must be treated as quickly as possible. They can also happen in a snap, with little or no warning. So it’s especially important to know what to do (and what not to do) if one strikes you or a member of your family.
If you live in the Laredo, TX area, the first step in any sort of dental emergency is to call Davenport Dental Group. We have two locations for your convenience. To book an appointment at Junction Drive, call 956-242-6745. For our Winfield office, dial 956-517-2695. We will arrange for you to come in the same day or the next. If your emergency occurs outside of our normal business hours, leave a voicemail message and we will get back to you promptly.
Of course, if you think the emergency may be life threatening, go straight to the emergency room.
Types of Dental Emergencies (and What to Do about Them)
Knocked-Out (or “avulsed”) Tooth. If a tooth is knocked out of its socket but remains intact, the first thing you should do is pick up the phone and call us. The sooner we are able to see you, the higher the likelihood we will be able to save the tooth. If it is dirty, hold it by the top and rinse with milk (or water, if milk is unavailable). Do not wipe the tooth or touch the root. If possible, place the tooth back its socket, facing the correct way. If it doesn’t fit easily, keep it moist between your cheek and gum or in milk, saliva, or water. It’s not advisable to have young children store the loose tooth in their mouths, as they may accidentally swallow it. The most important thing to remember is that the tooth should not be allowed to dry out.
Broken or cracked tooth. A tooth that is broken or cracked is not only painful, but it opens you up to infection. You should clean your mouth by rinsing it out with warm water. If bleeding is present, stop it by applying gauze or a tea bag to the area. A cold compress placed on the cheek or lips will help control swelling and pain. Take an over-the-counter pain reliever like acetaminophen (but not aspirin) if needed. Do not apply any sort of topical painkiller to the gums! If you can’t see us right away, you may cover the broken or cracked part of the tooth with temporary dental cement, which is available at drugstores.
Severe tooth pain. If you are dealing with a bad toothache, call us right away. You may have a cavity, a cracked tooth, a loose filling, or an abscess (infection of the dental pulp). We won’t necessarily know the cause until you come in to see us, but there is almost certainly something going on that must be treated. At home, you can rinse the mouth with warm water to clean it out, and very gently use dental floss to remove any food stuck in the teeth.
Damaged or loose restoration. If a filling, crown, or other restoration is damaged or has fallen out of your mouth, it’s important to make an appointment to get it replaced as soon as possible. Not only will your tooth likely be extremely sensitive without the restoration, but it will be vulnerable to further damage and decay. In the meantime, clove oil applied to the tooth can relieve pain. You may also purchase dental cement at a drugstore and use it to reattach the crown temporarily or just to cover the area previously protected by the restoration.
Whatever your dental emergency, Davenport Dental Group is prepared to handle it so you can get on with your life pain-free. We do have a convenient online contact form, but suggest calling one of our Laredo, TX offices directly in an emergency situation. You may reach our Junction Drive location at 956-242-6745 and our Winfield office at 956-517-2695.