If you play a contact sport then your chance of suffering a dental emergency is greater than most others. It's a good idea for you to make sure you are always prepared in case something should happen. The faster you react to a dental emergency, the better the chances will be that the dentist will be able to save your tooth. You want to keep the following information in mind:
Have an emergency kit with you
Anytime you go to a practice or a game you should be prepared with an emergency dental kit just in case. In the kit you want to have gauze, an instant ice pack, pain reliever, a small baggie, a clean small towel, a business card of your dentist and some numbers of 24-hour emergency dentists in your area. Keep the kit in your sports bag or in the trunk of your car so you know it's always going to be nearby if you need it.
Wear your head gear
You want to make sure you wear your head gear anytime there is a chance of full contact. This means you should be wearing head gear during practices that have the potential for getting rough. Head gear will take a lot of the force and lessen the chances of you knocking a tooth out or loosening them by getting hit. It will also protect you from a possible concussion or other head or face injury.
If you should have a tooth get knocked out it is important that you do everything correctly and quickly. The longer your tooth is allowed to be out of your mouth, the less likely it is that the dentist will be able to save the tooth. Follow the instructions below to increase the chances of saving your tooth:
- Pick the tooth up without touching the root
- Rinse the tooth off using your own saliva (Never use soap or another type of cleaner)
- Put the tooth back into the socket root first (If you are able to do so)
- Bite down on a piece of gauze with the affected tooth to hold it firmly in place
- Store the tooth in the small plastic baggie in your own saliva if you aren't able to get it back in the socket
- Take some over-the-counter pain reliever
- Use an instant ice pack on your cheek to reduce swelling and help with pain relief
- Call the dentist and let them know you are on your way
If you knock a tooth loose then you want to take pain reliever and use the ice pack to reduce swelling. Don't wiggle the tooth or allow your tongue to push on it. Call the emergency dentist and let them know you need to get in immediately.
Following the information in this article will help you save your tooth if you have a dental emergency.