No one wants to have a dental emergency due to the inconvenience, uncertainty, and discomfort. Thankfully, there are steps we can take to prevent them. Here, our Comox dentists share tips on ways you can avoid dental emergencies.
Dental emergencies are any dental issues that have to be addressed by a dentist immediately, this could include:
- Knocked out, chipped, or broken teeth
- Severe swelling on your face or in your mouth
- Severe or persistent toothache that can’t be addressed with over-the-counter pain medications
- Cuts to the lip or tongue
- Lost crowns or fillings
All of the above situations could cause discomfort, pain, or damage to your teeth that need to be treated by a dentist as fast as possible.
How to Avoid Dental Emergencies
Knowing what dental emergencies are, makes them easier to prevent. Dental emergencies can occur for many reasons and despite our best efforts, but we can always take precautions to lower our risk of injuring our teeth, jaw, or gums.
Only use your teeth to chew food.
Lots of people use their teeth to bite fingernails, open packages, and perform other tasks that aren't chewing food. But this is an easy way to chip or injure them, as you expose your teeth to harm along with your inner cheeks, lips, and gums.
Take the extra time to find the appropriate tools such as scissors, and save your teeth for chewing food.
Wear a mouthguard when playing sports.
Do you participate in sports or any high-impact, physically strenuous activities? Though these are great for getting your blood pumping and staying physically active, they can also present a hazard as you’re at risk for impacts to the head, face, or neck.
These blows can easily result in significant injuries that lead to dental emergencies. To avoid these scenarios, always wear a custom-made mouthguard to protect your teeth and mouth against any injury.
Limit sugary foods.
Everyone enjoys snacks and hits of sugar in the late afternoon. But, sugar leads to bacteria and plaque buildup that causes cavities, wear on our teeth, gum disease, and tooth decay that could result in dental emergencies. Popcorn kernels, hard candy, and other foods can be a hazard.
Next time you’re at the grocery store, stock up on crunchy vegetables such as carrots to snack on and healthier soft foods such as yogurt. After a few weeks of avoiding the hard, chewy sugary foods, you’ll hardly notice their absence from your diet - and your teeth will thank you.
Maintain an excellent oral hygiene routine at home.
A portion of preventing dental emergencies consists of day-to-day maintenance and preparation. Dental emergencies sometimes happen as a result of tooth decay or painful cavities.
Maintaining a rigorous oral hygiene routine can reduce the chances of these. Remember to brush twice daily for two minutes each time and floss at least once per day.
Attend regular dental appointments.
Along with maintaining an oral hygiene routine, regular visits to the dentist for hygiene cleanings and exams are a must. They not only clean your teeth with professional-grade tools but can also detect any issues with your teeth early on, helping you avoid dental emergencies.