Whoops! Your dental crown just came off, and our office is closed. What do you do? Dental accidents and emergencies happen, and often they seem to come at inconvenient times.
That’s why our fearless leader, Dr. Candace Krause, has come to the rescue with some tips for handling the situation at home until you can get into the office!
The Problem: Your temporary or permanent crown just came off.
The Solution: A lot of times, you can rinse out the inside of your crown and slip it back onto your tooth. The moisture will often reactivate the crown’s cement and help hold it in place! Note that your crown will only properly fit one way, so be sure to rotate it and try it at each angle until it fits snugly and easily into place.
You could also try a re-cement kit available at many drug stores (such as Recapit and Dentemp), which can be helpful in a real pinch. Just be sure not to apply too much cement onto your crown… just enough to help it stick in place.
The Problem: One of your fillings or your tooth breaks.
The Solution: If the broken edge of your tooth or filling feels sharp and jagged, you can use an emery board to gently smooth the rough edge until you can get into our office. You can also use the wax intended for orthodontic braces (which typically covers a sharp bracket) can be used to cover the broken edge of your tooth.
The Problem: You sustain a mouth injury, such as burning or biting your tongue, cheek or lip.
The Solution: Good ol’ saltwater is incredibly soothing and is great at cleansing mouth wounds and sores. Just mix a teaspoon of salt into a tall glass of water, then swish around your mouth for a minute. A teaspoon of salt is all you need; it should taste just slightly salty.
Chlorhexidine rinse—a prescription product—is also a helpful tool if you have it. We often send a small bottle home with our patients to have on hand for just this scenario! If you don’t have one, ask for one at your next visit so you’ll always have it on hand just incase.
Do not put aspirin or any other over-the-counter medication on the wound, as it could make the situation worse.
When in doubt, give us a call (contact) so we can talk you through the situation until you are able to get in to see us! During after-hours, our answering service can contact one of our doctors on call to help you.