Our general dentist has some tips that can help you to manage your chipped tooth while you wait to see the dentist. A tooth can become chipped as a result of being weakened by tooth decay, trauma to the face or biting into something hard.
Some chips are accompanied by pain while others only ruin the aesthetics of the tooth. The severity of the damage often determines if there will be any pain involved.
A general dentist share tips for taking care of a chipped tooth
A severely chipped tooth with damage that reaches the pulp chamber counts as a dental emergency. Minor chips might not count as emergencies, but they also require treatment. Failing to treat a chipped tooth can lead to further damage to the tooth. Teeth are protected by their outer layer called enamel. Enamel typically takes the brunt of the damage when a tooth has a minor chip. Failing to address this leaves the tooth's less durable inner layers exposed to bacteria and acids that can damage them in the mouth.
Chipped teeth often have sharp edges and that can lead to injuries to soft tissues in the mouth like the cheeks.
Here are some simple tips our general dentist recommends for those dealing with a chipped tooth:
- Use a cold compress: Applying ice or a cold piece of cloth to the cheeks around the injury can help to reduce any swelling or pain that occurs. However, if the damage affects the pulp chamber, it is best to avoid using a hot or cold compress.
- Take over the counter painkillers: Over the counter pain killers can help to manage the pain caused by a chipped tooth. There are also a variety of products that are used to relieve toothaches specifically.
- Smooth out the area with dental cement: Patients can smoothen the edges created by a chipped tooth by applying over the counter dental cement to it. A piece of sugarless gum can be used if there is not dental cement in the medicine cabinet.
- Eat soft foods: Those with a chipped tooth should avoid eating things that can aggravate the injury. Soft foods like mashed potatoes are best during this period.
- Rinse often: Rinsing the mouth with salt water can promote healing and reduce the pain caused by a chipped tooth.
- Avoid spices: Spicy food items can irritate the nerve and blood vessels in a chipped tooth. A bland diet is more appropriate until a dentist has fixed the tooth.
- Avoid tobacco products: Smoking or chewing tobacco products can also aggravate the nerve of a damaged tooth, increasing any pain and discomfort experienced.
Our dentist recommends coming to the clinic immediately if you experience symptoms like:
- Increased pain that does not go away
- Pus coming from the damaged tooth
- Red streaks around the tooth
Fix your chipped tooth
Call or visit our Denham Springs clinic to learn more about how our dentist can fix your damaged tooth.
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