We Understand That Accidents Happen
Chestnut Dental maintains a 24-hour emergency service. If you feel you need either urgent advice or need to see one of our dentists on-call, please call our office to reach a receptionist during normal business hours. After office hours, our answering service will take your call and alert the on-call dentist to contact you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Pain in or around the mouth can be caused by a number of problems and should be evaluated by one of our dentists as soon as possible to make the proper diagnosis. The pain may be caused by tooth or soft tissue problems which can be difficult to distinguish. Infections of the gums or ulcers usually result in significant pain and need attention. Toothaches can be spontaneous or initiated by various stimulants such as cold air, hot or cold foods or beverages, and biting. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES should you use aspirin directly on the aching tooth or on the gums. For temporary pain relief, acetaminophen is recommended.
Soft Tissue Lacerations and/or Bruises
The application of ice to traumatized areas can help to control the bleeding and limit subsequent swelling. For active bleeding, apply firm (but gentle) pressure with sterile gauze or a clean cloth. If the injury has resulted in significant bleeding, please call our office to be seen for evaluation and treatment or go to an emergency room.
All but the smallest of fractures need to be evaluated within 24-48 hours of the accident. If the fractured segment is found, please keep it moist in a container of water or milk, and bring it to the appointment for an evaluation. Emergency treatment consists of either re-bonding the segment to the fractured tooth or temporarily applying a resin material over the fractured edge. At a subsequent appointment, a full resin build-up of the fractured tooth can be completed.
All injuries to either primary or permanent teeth that result in significant loosening or displacement must be evaluated. Displaced teeth require repositioning and stabilization as soon as possible. Permanent teeth that are displaced totally out of the socket should be placed back into the socket by grasping the crown of the tooth and gently re-implanting the tooth. If the root is dirty, gently clean it by running it under cold water prior to re-implantation. If you are unable to re-implant the tooth, it should be placed in a container of cold milk. It is essential that the tooth be re-implanted by a dentist ASAP to maximize success!
Canker sores (aphthous ulcers) are usually small sores inside the mouth with a white or gray base surrounded by a red border. Generally, the ulcerations last one to two weeks and often recur. The duration of canker sores can be reduced by the use of antimicrobial mouthwashes or topical agents.
Following anesthesia, some patients play, suck or bite on their lip, cheeks, or tongue. A raw, swollen, and tender area can develop. This is not an infection. Keep the area clean and apply a cool compress as needed. For temporary relief, please take acetaminophen or ibuprofen, and please don’t hesitate to call our office.
Temporary crowns and even permanent crowns can come out. In general, it is advisable to put the crown back in place within a week. This can be achieved at home using either denture adhesive or temporary cement, both of which can be found at your local drugstore. First clean the inside of the crown with a clean cotton swab, dry your tooth, place the cement or adhesive in the crown, and place the crown back in place biting down on cotton for 2 minutes. Never use super glue. The tooth should be evaluated by the dental team if the lost crown is a permanent crown or if you are not successful in re-cementing any lost crown.
In the case you lose a filling, please call our office for an evaluation. Temporary cement or filling material can be obtained from your local drugstore as a temporary measure to avoid food impaction. A clean nail file can be used to smooth rough edges temporarily until the tooth can be evaluated by the dental team.
Swelling can be a sign of tooth or gum infection. Please call our office so we may help you determine the appropriate course of treatment. We may need to schedule an appointment to see you to further evaluate.