A dental first aid kit is essential for handling dental emergencies and maintaining oral health.An emergency medical kit is always available at home, but what about a dental kit? I bet no one must have thought about keeping a dental emergency kit at home. But just like any medical emergencies, dental emergencies can occur too. Of course, dental emergencies are less fatal in comparison, but one should keep a dental kit handy too.
Not many of us are aware of whether to see a dentist or a general physician in case of a dental emergency or rather put it this way that many don’t know what dental emergencies are?
A number of individuals indulge in fun activities and are prone to dental injuries. On the other hand, few people who have pain in their teeth later consume painkillers. This makes them believe the pain has been relieved which they do not know can come back worse than before.
It has been documented that children between the age of seven to fourteen years are more prone to injuries while playing and elders have an increased probability of undergoing a road traffic accident or just having a dental trauma out of the blue.
What are dental emergencies?
The dental emergencies that one can come across are bleeding from the mouth due to injury or getting hit in the face, cracked and broken teeth, oral infections, and extreme pain with swelling. As long as you take appropriate measures before visiting the dentist there is a high chance of increasing the survival rate of the broken or cracked tooth. An emergency dental kit can be very useful and prove to address the injuries as soon as possible and save a lot of suffering and complications.
Rush to your dentist for a knocked out tooth
While playing contact sports ( e.g. Rugby, Boxing, etc.) or non-contact sports (cycling, skating, etc.) there might come a moment when the tooth may get knocked from the tooth socket in one piece. One need not panic as there is a possibility the tooth can be saved from permanent loss.
All you need to do is dip your tooth in half glass of milk and rush to your dentist within 20-30 minutes. If it is a milk tooth, then do not worry, let the dentist evaluate the trauma. The tooth can be also stored in the patient’s own saliva by placing the removed tooth below the tongue of the patient.
What should your dental kit contain?
Your medical kit need not contain very expensive and unnecessary things, but just the ones you might need to save yourself from more suffering. Remember, only a dentist can help you treat the dental emergency, but you can take the necessary precautionary steps before reaching the dentist.
Extracts of clove oil are readily available in medical shops or even in Ayurvedic stores. This helps in reducing the pain in case of severe toothaches.
Antiseptic mouthwashes are different than the usual mouthwashes available in the markets. These are very useful in case of multiple oral ulcers and infections in case of sudden wisdom tooth pain. As bacteria are the main reason that causes tooth and gum infections, using an antiseptic mouthwash can help reduce the bacterial load and give you immediate relief. But remember to visit your dentist as this is temporary aid.
Handling open wounds with bare hands is a big NO! Bare hands have many micro-organisms that can get transferred to the open wounds thereby transferring the infection to the wound site. Hence, either do not touch the wound at all or if you have to, it is wise to use latex-free gloves.
A mouth-mirror can be used to view the wounds present in the darker parts of your mouth. One can get a better view of the darker placed wounds if the mouth-mirror is placed with light attached to it. This is also helpful to see your teeth or check for any black spots cavities or food stuck in between your teeth with the help of a small mirror just the one your dentist uses. You can also assess any regions of the mouth left out while brushing your teeth.
Cotton and Gauze Pads
These can be used to stop the bleeding anywhere in the mouth and can be used as pressure packs. These are more useful in case you recently underwent dental surgery or got a tooth extraction. During tooth extraction, the cotton or gauze keeps the open tooth socket as well as other wounds clean and absorbs the blood and stops it from oozing out. Always verify that the cotton rolls and gauges are clean and packed neatly to avoid further infection.
Got a family member/friend with braces? Suddenly the wires and brackets poke while eating food? Dental wax can be useful for them as it helps soothe the irritation caused by these wires and brackets.
Intra-oral ointments are very helpful as it causes soothing and numbing effect in case of ulcers or minor injury cuts in the mouth. A numbing gel can immediately relieve you of the pain and burning sensations too.
This is an over-the-counter painkiller in our dental kit as it helps to ease the pain in the dental injury, it should be kept in mind that anticoagulant should not be used when bleeding as it interferes with the clotting of the blood. You can simply tele consult your dentist for pain killers in case of severe pain.
Ice packs cause constriction of the blood vessels reducing the blood supply to the injured region of the mouth thereby helpful in cases of bleeding in mouth injuries, reducing the swelling and reducing the pain incase of a severe toothache.
Small plastic container
It is important to have a container handy in case of a knocked out tooth. The tooth can be stored in the same container dipped in milk and taken to your dentist for further treatment.
A flosspick/ flossette
Why a flosspick? This question must have popped in the mind. The answer is simple. Often food that gets stuck between the teeth can cause severe pain and discomfort. Using a toothpick in such situations can lead to many gum injuries and infections. Instead of using a toothpick, use a flosspick instead.
- One need not practice dentistry, but with the help of basic knowledge and well equipped dental kit, you can save your family members from a lot of pain.
- Keep your dental emergency kit handy.
- Along with the medical emergency kit, the dental kit should be updated as dental emergencies are as important as medical emergencies in order to prevent further complications.
- Tele-consult your dentist or call on dental helpline numbers to save you from further complications during such dental emergencies.