October 26, 2017
Nobody wants to end up in the emergency room because of medical emergency. A dental emergency isn’t any different. In most cases, a dental emergency involves the risk of a tooth being permanently lost, severe tooth pain and severe bleeding of the gums.
If you’re experiencing a dental emergency, it is important to visit your dental office ASAP. Dental emergencies can happen gradually over time such as an abscessed tooth, or they can happen suddenly, such as getting a tooth knocked out playing football.
How do you protect your teeth and gums so that you’ll have a reduced risk of ever having a dental emergency?
- Proper, Daily At-Home Dental Hygiene
Proper flossing and brushing are vital for tooth and gum healthy. Germs and bacteria build up from food particles can lead to cavities and gum disease which can weaken teeth and gums, making them more susceptible to injury and infections which may require an emergency dentist office visit.
- Using Mouth Guards
Regardless of whether you participate in a contact sport or not, it is always a good idea to wear a mouth guard. Mouth guards help protect your teeth from trauma should you get hit in the mouth. Some even recommend using mouth guards in recreational activities such as skiing where there is a possibility of falling and bumpy rides that make your teeth bump into or grind against each other.
A lose or missing tooth is indeed a dental emergency, but teeth that are broken, chipped or cracked tooth is one that is compromised and is more at risk of getting cavities and breaking down even further.
- Regular Dental Visits
It’s important to visit the dentist every six months for a dental cleaning and examination. Only a dentist has the tools to deep clean your teeth and remove stubborn plaque build-up that you can’t remove at home. If you haven’t been to the dentist in a while, you risk having teeth and gums weakened by plaque, cavities and gum disease.
Another vital part of a routine dental visit is the thorough examination. Your dentist will be able to assess potential dental health concerns and provide preventative treatment. These preventative measures can help keep gum disease from progressing or halt the worsening of an abscessed tooth.
- Mindful Eating and Drinking
You’ve heard to stay clear of candy, crackers, and other unhealthy foods high in sugars and refined carbs. Coffee, tea, soda, fruit juice and alcohol are all beverages that are on the “no” list. Additional foods you should be wary of are ones that are sticky, hard and crunchy. These foods make it hard to completely clean your teeth, can break off and easily get dislodged between teeth that is difficult to remove and they can be hard enough to chip or even cause a tooth to come out.
Plaque, tartar and cavity-causing bacteria are known causes of brittle, stained and weakened teeth and gums. Some foods, however, can also damage teeth and gums by requiring excessive, hard use of the teeth.
Sealants are common cavity prevention treatments for children. They can, however, be used by adults as well. Sealants are clear, plastic coverings that go over the teeth, usually over the molars. Food particles and the cavity-forming bacteria are kept from attaching to and accumulating on the surface of teeth because of the plastic barrier of the sealants. Sealants, however are best for young children who have not yet perfected proper dental hygiene and for seniors who have natural teeth remaining who have a hard time properly flossing and brushing the back teeth.
Besides a healthy, nutrient packed diet, getting your daily dose of essential vitamins your teeth and gums need are another great way to keep them strong and resistant to decay and injury. Vitamins A, B and C are all great for healthy gums and for lowering one’s risk of gum disease. Vitamin D and calcium are important in maintaining strong teeth that are stable in their sockets.
Dental emergencies are never fun and they are things that nobody wants to have happen to them. They can be painful, cause long-term damage and may require costly, invasive procedures to treat.
There are some simple preventative measures you can take to prevent and lower your chance of having a dental emergency including the daily practice of proper at-home oral hygiene, getting sealants, and eating a healthy diet.
If you think you’re experiencing a dental emergency, call us at Lake Point Dental immediately. If you think you may be at risk of a dental emergency, contact us to schedule a teeth cleaning and exam.
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