Your teeth should last your whole life if you take good care of them, but sometimes accidents happen. Breaking a tooth is something that many people experience at some point in their lives, whether it is a chip or more severe damage. It can happen when you’re playing sports, if you bite into a piece of food wrong, or through some other sudden or unexpected occurrence. This is what a Newport Beach dentist had to say on the subject of what to do if you break a tooth.

 

A Cracked or Chipped Tooth

 

Certainly a minor chip or crack is not as serious as breaking a tooth in half. These are the sorts of injuries that often occur from doing things like biting down on a hidden sliver of bone in your food.

 

Cracked or chipped teeth are noticeable from an aesthetic standpoint, and because of that, you’re going to want to get them repaired. A skilled Newport Beach dentist can do the repair work easily enough. The condition can also be painful sometimes, though. Because of that, while you are waiting to receive medical attention, you should eat and chew very carefully.

 

You might not feel it’s so urgent that you need to see a dentist the very next day, but probably this isn’t something that you’ll want to hold off on fixing for very long. Likely you will be self-conscious about the damaged tooth, especially if it’s one of the front ones that people can see every time you talk or smile.

 

If you’re experiencing any pain from the injury, you should be fine with over-the-counter pain meds. If you need stronger medication, then it’s indicative that the injury is more serious than it appears, and you should try to get in to see the dentist without delay.

 

Broken Teeth

 

A broken tooth is the sort of injury that more often takes place through things like contact sports. Full contact martial arts and things like football and soccer often bring about damage to teeth that goes beyond a chip or splinter. Sometimes freak accidents can also occur which might seriously damage teeth.

 

This is not the same situation as incurring some minor damage. What you must do is to contact a Newport Beach dentist so that they can see you right away. You shouldn’t put this off because a broken tooth will undoubtedly cause you some significant pain and discomfort. These are the sorts of injuries that go beyond aesthetic concerns.

 

If the event has just taken place, you can rinse your mouth out with salt water or warm water. You can then gently press a cold compress to your jaw in the area of the broken tooth. You can also get some gauze from a first aid kit and apply that to the broken tooth. This should help to slow the bleeding if any is occurring. If you don’t have access to gauze at that particular moment, you can substitute a wet tea bag. The bleeding should subside in ten minutes or so.

 

If the break is severe, then ideally you should see a Newport Beach dentist within 24 hours. Your dentist should be sensitive to a situation like this and find a way to juggle their schedule so that they can see you. This is a legitimate emergency, and the sooner they can get a look at you and ascertain the extent of the damage, the sooner they can figure out the most appropriate action to take.

 

If there is a delay in the time till you can see the dentist, you can get some dental cement from the drugstore. It’s not the best solution, but it can make things a little more tolerable for you till the dentist can see you. Again, you’ll want to get yourself some over-the-counter pain meds to take the edge off. Any eating or drinking should be done with extreme care.

 

Tooth Avulsion

 

An avulsion means that a tooth has been completely removed as the result of an accident. Again, there are all kinds of different ways that this can happen, but when it does, there is no time for delay. You need to see a Newport Beach dentist that same day if at all possible.

 

If the tooth was removed entirely and you have it in your possession, handle it by the crown, and try not to touch it by the root. A tooth being entirely knocked out can cause severe nerve damage, but replacing it in the socket may be possible if the work can be done quickly. If the tooth has been shattered then of course it cannot be saved, though a replacement can be the next best thing. Luckily, dental technology has now advanced to the point where crowns look entirely convincing. When you have the false tooth installed, no one will ever be able to tell the difference.

 

Prevention

 

Many of the accidents that result in tooth loss are impossible to avoid. Biting into a piece of food the wrong way is something that can happen to anyone, and these kinds of freak occurrences are possible even if you cut your food into tiny pieces and take the smallest bites possible.

 

There are precautions you can take if you play sports or engage in other potentially dangerous physical activities, though. Wearing a mouthguard is a smart idea, for instance.

 

Your teeth make up your smile, and that’s the look you want to present to the world. If any of them are damaged, then you’ll want to get the problem corrected to alleviate any pain that you’re feeling, but also because you don’t want to be embarrassed whenever you laugh or grin. If an accident of this sort has befallen you, let a Newport Beach dentist propose a solution. Most dental insurances will help you with the cost, and soon your smile will be as bright and sparkling as it ever was.