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Don’t Let Tooth Pain Ruin Your Vacay!

woman with toothache holding jaw

Now that summer is here, you and your family are likely now thinking about where you’ve always wanted to visit! If travel is not your thing, there’s always Redondo Beach just around the corner! Either way, we’re sure that you’ll find the perfect spot to call your home away from home along the way.

Regardless of the type of vacation you plan, it’s always important to be as prepared as possible. After all, a medical emergency could easily derail it and end up taking up all of your time. The same applies to dental emergencies, which are more likely to occur if you don’t practice daily oral care and visit our office regularly for cleanings and checkups.

Unfortunately, dental emergencies can occur even when you do practice daily oral brushing and flossing and receive professional care. When traveling, you should always be aware of the emergency facilities in the area you’re traveling to, so start by researching these ahead of time. In the event that you’re having a dental emergency, either outside of the country or in another state, here’s what you should do next in the following circumstances.

Severe Toothache

smile with chipped front tooth close up

Make sure that no food debris is caught between your tooth first by sliding floss between your teeth. If pain continues, take an over-the-counter painkiller like ibuprofen to reduce any discomfort. Do not take aspirin as the chemicals inside this painkiller can actually cause a burning sensation in your mouth if they come into direct contact with your tooth. Call the dentist you researched beforehand and pay them a visit. If you are unfamiliar with the area and are staying at a hotel, ask the concierge at the front desk where the nearest dentist (emergency or otherwise) is located.

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Broken Tooth

Old man holding cheek in pain

Rinse your mouth out with warm water, making sure to save any loose pieces of tooth. Apply a cold compress to your face in 10-minute intervals. This will reduce swelling; just make sure to remove it after 10 minutes to avoid damaging your facial tissue. Use either an ice pack or a bag filled with crush ice, making sure to wrap it with a towel first. If bleeding is present, apply a gauze pad to the tooth for about 10 minutes or until the bleeding stops. If neither bleeding nor swelling cease, get to a dentist or emergency room right away.

Knocked-Out Tooth

Woman holding cheek in pain

The sooner you can get the tooth back into its socket, the better. Start by locating the tooth. Pick it up by the crown portion only. Do not touch the root nor remove any tissue still attached to the root. If any debris has collected on the tooth, gently rinse it off with cool water. After rinsing your mouth out with warm water, carefully place the tooth back into its socket. Make sure you place it facing the correct direction. If this is not possible, you can also place the tooth into a container of milk or water mixed with salt. You can also use your saliva if you’re in a really tight situation. Get to a dentist within the hour for the best chance of reimplantation.

Lost Filling or Restoration

While it may not be as severe as the previously mentioned dental emergencies, an exposed tooth can still cause discomfort and sensitivity you’ll likely want to avoid. Sugarless gum can act as a fair temporary filling. You can also purchase dental cement from a local grocery store or pharmacy to reseat the crown or filling. If a crown comes loose, use either dental cement, denture adhesive, or toothpaste as a last resort. To reduce sensitivity prior to reseating, apply clove oil to the damaged tooth directly using a cotton ball.

It’s one thing to be prepared in the event a dental emergency occurs. However, not all emergencies can be avoided, which is why these tips are so incredibly valuable to any traveler or family on vacation. If you have not yet completed your recent checkup or cleaning and you intend on going on vacation in the near future, now is the perfect time to get scheduled as well as get any questions you may have answered!

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