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Emergency dental care at home

To our patients and friends of Time Dental

Scroll below to see detailed advice on managing dental pain, painful ulcers, broken teeth and swollen gums for the emergency dental care at home.

If after undertaking these self-help measures you still need advice, please telephone the practice on 01252 723 008. Cases will be triaged by our dentist, telephone advice will be given and specific emergency cases may need to be referred to a centralised treatment unit.

A dental emergency is considered to be showing signs or symptoms of: a facial swelling; trouble breathing; trouble swallowing; swelling around the eyes; suffered trauma and are bleeding from a broken or missing tooth.

We will be postponing all non-urgent treatment until advised by the governing bodies that it is safe to resume our normal service. Patients of Time Dental will be notified directly by email once the practice can begin to see patients. Updates with the latest information will also be posted on our website www.timedental.co.uk

How to manage pain from teeth and provide dental care at home:

Analgesics and anti-inflammatory tablets:

To help with reducing pain, Paracetamol can help. Ensure instructions are followed for any medication and that your medical health allows you to do so. You must only take the recommended dose as described on the packet.

If you need more help you can combine paracetamol with Ibuprofen and take them at the same time. Ibuprofen is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory that works well in combination.

Another excellent combination is co-codamol combined with Ibuprofen. Please read the label before taking any type of medication.

Desensitizing toothpaste:

Colgate sensitive pro-relief or Sensodyne rapid relief can help to relieve sensitivity to cold drinks.  The toothpaste can placed on the finger and then rubbed onto and around the sensitive tooth. This must be applied at least 5 times a day to gain any benefit.

Clove oil:

This essential oil can be found in pharmacies as well as purchased on-line. Place the clove oil on a cotton bud and apply this to the tooth that has a sensitive area or a hole in it. This can work very well to reduce sensitivity.

Anesthetic gel:

Gel such as Orajel can be applied directly onto the area to help numb the pain. This gel contains anesthetic and can be purchased easily from pharmacies.

Warm salt water rinse:

This is an excellent remedy to help with ulcers, swellings in the mouth or gum problems as a emergency dental care at home. Take a glass of warm water, add 2 teaspoons of salt and rinse your mouth at least 4 times a day. This reduces the bacterial load in the mouth and promotes healing.

Using a mouthwash with chlorhexidine:

Products such as Corsydyl, CB12 or Curasept mouthwash has chlorhexidine gluconate. This is an anti-bacterial ingredient which helps heal ulcers, bleeding gums and swellings in the mouth.

Keeping your head raised when lying down:

If you have a toothache, it can sometimes get worse at night when lying down. This is  due to the increased blood pressure in the tooth which can then increase the pain. An extra pillow to help keep the head elevated when you sleep can really help.

Cold compress:

Sometimes tooth pain can lead to a swelling. A cold compress can help reduce a swollen face as well as offer some temporary pain relief. NEVER put heat externally on your face if you have a swelling as this will make the situation worse.

Here are home care tips to deal with common dental problems:

How to manage pain from ulcers for an emergency dental care at home?

Mouth ulcers can occur for many reasons. They can be a sign for underlying medical conditions such as iron deficiency. They can occur after trauma from eating something too hot or too hard. They can also occur due to trauma from a sharp edge of a broken tooth.

To reduce the discomfort, you can try:

Anaesthetic gel such as Orajel or Bonjela. Take analgesics such as Paracetamol or Ibuprofen. Always check that you are safe to take them.

To speed up the healing try:

A warm salt water rinse 3-4 times a day; using a mouthwash like Corsydyl, CB12, Curasept or Peroxyl twice a day for 10-14 days

How to manage pain from a broken tooth?

If a tooth or filling is broken, you may experience pain from the exposed tooth or pain to your tongue or cheek from the sharp edge.

Desensitise the tooth by using sensitive toothpaste such as Sensodyne rapid relief or Colgate sensitive pro relief.

Use clove oil (available from pharmacies) placed on a cotton bud and dab the exposed / broken tooth with it.

You may also need to protect the tongue/cheek from the sharp edge. Use a temporary dental filling (available from pharmacies) to plug the hole. The tip to placing this is to dry the tooth first with a small piece of cotton wool or tissue and then place the material and use your finger to smooth it into place. This filling material may need topping up over time until we are able to see you for definitive treatment.

How to manage pain and swelling from gums?

If bacteria or food debris gets trapped between the gum and tooth it can cause pain as well as a swelling.

Clean the teeth and gums thoroughly in the area using Corsydyl gel on your toothbrush. Use an interdental aid or Tepe interdental brush dipped in Corsdyl gel/mouth wash to clean in between the teeth. Corsdyl can stain your teeth so only use it for no more than 14 days.

Use a mouthwash. Try using Corsdyl, CB12, Curasept or Peroxyl mouth wash at a different time to tooth brushing everyday for 14 days. You can also use a warm salt water rinse 3-4 times a day to help with any swelling.

Take pain relief such as Paracetamol or ibuprofen as advised above to also help.

In the meantime, please stay indoors and look after yourself and each other. There is still hope and light at this challenging time.

Best wishes

Dr Rashid and the Time Dental team

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