If you find a piece of a broken
or chipped tooth after you have had damage to a tooth, bring
the piece or pieces with you when you go to the dentist. Since
he has the required skills and equipment, many times the dentist
can repair the tooth with these broken pieces. He will usually
cement them back together, and that is cheaper and easier than
having to replace the tooth. You don't have to bring lost fillings
if you find them, because the dentist can just as easily make
a new filling for that tooth.
Depending upon where the damage
was sustained, there may be jagged edges on the tooth that was
chipped or broken. In this type of scenario, the sharp ends can
irritate the surrounding soft tissue of the mouth. In order to
prevent this, use a small piece of soft wax or temporary dental
filler in the damaged area. It's always a good idea to keep something
of this nature on hand, in case such a circumstance should arise.
If you must eat, eat only soft
foods until you've be seen by your dentist. Also be sure to chew
on the opposite side of the mouth from the damaged tooth. If
you chew on the damaged tooth you will cause further irritation
and perhaps even infection, resulting in further damage or tooth
loss. Also avoid extremely hot or extremely cold food. Foods
that have extreme temperatures cause further pain and can further
irritate the damaged area.
You want to make sure that the
gums around the tooth close up and the blood is able to coagulate.
This is because there is a lot of blood in the area of the gums.
Avoid taking any aspirin products because they will interfere
with the blood coagulation factor. Take Advil, Motrin or Aleve
in small doses. You should be alright, as long as you don't have
any allergic reactions to these OTC medications. You should be
able to get this information from your pharmacist, who should
have a list of the medications you take.
If you follow these common-sense
guidelines and take steps to repair dental damage, you will probably
not lose the tooth, and you'll increase your chances of keeping
the damage to a minimum. If you visit your dentist regularly,
and keep your teeth healthy and clean, you'll also increase your
chances of them healing quickly.