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Managing Dental Emergencies When You’re on Vacation

June 20, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — riverplace @ 2:49 am

Woman with dental painSummer is here! It’s time to pack your bags to take a vacation. The last thing you’d expect to interrupt your travel plans is a dental emergency; however, they are more common than you might think. A stressful situation can be more challenging if it happens when you’re out of town. You can’t wait until you get back home to see the dentist. Don’t worry. Here’s what you should do if a dental emergency happens while you’re on vacation.

Common Dental Emergencies

1 in 6 Americans have a dental emergency annually, often from underlying oral health issues that haven’t been treated, like decay. Although there’s never a good time for one to happen, a dental emergency can quickly ruin your vacation. Here’s what you should do if the unexpected should happen:

  • Toothache: Take an over-the-counter pain reliever and rinse your mouth with salt water to manage discomfort. Eat soft foods and avoid late-night snacking.
  • Chipped or Broken Tooth: Bite on a piece of gauze to control any bleeding and avoid chewing on that side of your mouth. If the break is minor and you’re not having any discomfort, you can wait a day or two to see your dentist. If the damage is significant, contact an emergency dentist right away.
  • Lost Crown: A lost crown will need to be replaced. You can apply a small dab of toothpaste to provide a temporary fix until you can get to a dentist.
  • Broken Denture: Never use over-the-counter repair kits to fix a denture. Stop wearing it immediately to prevent oral injuries. Use an old denture if possible.
  • Knocked-Out Tooth: Hold the tooth by the crown and rinse it with water. Do not use any soaps or cleaners. Try to reinsert the tooth back into the socket. If you’re not successful, place it in a cup of milk and get to a dentist right away.

Preventing Dental Emergencies

You can’t always stop a dental emergency from occurring, but there are many things you can do to lessen your risk, like:

  • Create an Emergency Kit: Pack an emergency oral hygiene kit with essential items, like gauze and pain relievers.
  • Visit Your Dentist: Visit your dentist for a cleaning and checkup before you leave. They’ll ensure there aren’t any untreated dental issues hiding in your mouth.
  • Find an Emergency Dentist: Find an emergency dentist near your destination to have a phone number handy, just in case.
  • Protect Your Smile: Wear an athletic mouthguard if you’ll be participating in any sports.

Time is of the utmost importance when facing a dental emergency. Do not wait until your vacation is over to see a dentist, or it can be too late to save your tooth.

About Dr. Megan McInnis

Dr. McInnis earned her dental degree from the Texas A&M Health Science Center and regularly continues her education in many specialties to provide up-to-date services. She provides high-quality care to promote the mouth and body connection. If you need an emergency dentist, request an appointment online or call (503) 822-6045.

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