May 18, 2020
The number one way to protect yourself and your loved ones from the COVID-19 pandemic is to practice social distancing. Thankfully, your Michigan City emergency dentist is still providing treatment for dental emergencies. However, some dental situations can be treated at home without risking exposure to the coronavirus. Here’s how to tell if you’re experiencing an urgent dental emergency or if you can treat your symptoms at home until your dentist reopens.
Dental Emergencies That Need Urgent Care
You need to seek professional care if you are in danger of losing a tooth or have a serious infection. Circumstances that need immediate attention include:
- Broken or fractured tooth: Not only are broken teeth painful, but the exposed inner layers of the tooth could become damaged or infected if not repaired right away.
- Dislodged or knocked-out permanent tooth: The likelihood of successfully reattaching a permanent tooth diminish after 30 minutes. A dislodged tooth needs to be stabilized by a professional to prevent it from falling out.
- Dental abscess or intense toothache: A small bump on your gums or an intense toothache accompanied by fever, fatigue, or swelling could indicate a serious dental infection. These can be life-threatening if left untreated, so call your dentist immediately if you notice these symptoms.
Handling Non-Urgent Dental Emergencies at Home
Any damage or pain in your mouth should be seen by your dentist right away. However, to limit your trips outside and protect yourself from COVID-19, you may be able to treat your symptoms at home until your dentist reopens. Here are the most common non-urgent dental emergencies and how to treat them in quarantine:
- Chipped or cracked filling or tooth: Light damage to your teeth or dental fillings can be covered with a piece of wet, sugarless gum or dental wax. This will mitigate sensitivity, prevent further damage, and ward off infection.
- Mild to moderate toothache: To manage the discomfort of a toothache at home, try flossing, rinsing your mouth with saltwater, applying ice, or taking over-the-counter pain relievers.
- Inflamed, tender, or easily bleeding gums: These symptoms are typically associated with periodontal (gum) disease. This common bacterial infection can lead to tooth loss, but can be kept at bay with regular toothbrushing, thorough flossing, and using an antiseptic mouthwash.
Now more than ever, it’s essential that we do our best to practice great oral hygiene and prevent dental emergencies. However, knowing which situations require urgent treatment and which ones do not may be able to help keep you safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.
About the Practice
At Edgewood Dental, nothing is more important than the wellbeing of our patients, staff, and the community of Michigan City, IN. We have been closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic and the recommendations of the Indiana State Board of Health. To do our part in flattening the coronavirus curve, we have made the difficult decision to temporarily close our practice until further notice. However, we are still providing appointments for dental emergencies, so don’t hesitate to contact us via our website or at (219) 898-4545.
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