How Proper Oral Care Can Prevent Emergency Dentist Visits
Most dental emergencies happen as a result of some accident or trauma such as getting your tooth knocked during a sport or having some face injury. While many dental emergencies are sudden and require the help of a local emergency dentist, many of them develop slowly over time leading up to situations like an abscessed tooth.
Most of the emergencies that belong to the latter can be avoided if only you practice proper dental hygiene.
In this post, we look at ways to prevent dental emergencies.
Practice Proper Daily Hygiene
One of the commonest causes of gum disease, tooth decay, and infections which can be detrimental not only to oral health but otherwise also is - poor flossing and brushing techniques. Improper brushing techniques lead to a collection of food debris.
Educate yourself on proper ways to floss and brush every day. If you can do this much, you can easily cut down on the number of dental emergencies in a lifetime. If you wear bridges, braces, or have dexterity issues, flossing can be difficult. In that case, use a threader or a similar floss aid to reach more difficult places.
Pay Special Attention to any Recurrent/Persistent Pain
Pain is generally indicative of an underlying issue that needs your attention; especially if the pain is persistent. If you have a tooth that aches from time to time, it’s good to have it investigated. It could signal a possible cavity or a filling that has started to leak.
In some cases, if the pain disappears, you could be tempted to ignore it. But, it’s possible the problem has gone too deep. In no time, it could permanently damage the tooth nerves. Therefore, regular checkups are your only bet to have them thoroughly invested and fixed before the problem gets worse.
Maintain Excellent Oral Care
This one may look like a no-brainer but it’s often the #1 reason for most dental emergencies. Make sure that you -
- Brush and floss regularly
- Get regular checkups and cleanings
- Pay attention to any signs of decay
- Avoid consuming sugary, caffeinated, or too many acidic foods
If you’re careful, you should spot signs at an early stage and nip them in the bud.
Be Careful What You Do With Your Teeth
Your teeth are meant for chewing food only. So, do not use them for purposes other than what they’re intended for. Human teeth can be exceptionally strong which is why at times, it can be tempting to use them for ripping apart plastic, tags, or chewing on hard surfaces. Do not do that. They’re not scissors!
Doing this kind of stuff could easily lead to breaks and chips. Do not use your teeth for doing things that need a pair of scissors or it could lead to severe/permanent damage. You may end-up with potentially costly emergency trips.
Wear a Mouthguard When Playing Sports
Physical sports are a leading cause of a large percentage of total national dental emergencies. So, if your children partake in physical sports both contact and non-contact, be sure to get them a quality mouthguard. Also, make sure they wear it on a regular basis.
Dental injuries on a sports field could cause cracks and chips. They could even knock your whole tooth out. Undergoing restorative treatments could easily cost thousands of dollars over a lifetime.
If possible, go for a customized mouthguard for maximum comfort and ultimate protection. A custom-made guard also encourages easy breathing.
This may seem weird but hydration is closely connected with not just your overall physical health, but your oral health as well. In the absence of proper hydration, the human body finds it difficult to produce enough saliva.
Here’s what saliva does -
- It helps to balance the pH level of your mouth
- Saliva carries myriad minerals that offer protective coating on your teeth which keeps tooth decay at bay
- Saliva helps to wash away food particles, bacteria, and debris; thus helping to maintain your oral health.
Watch What You Eat
There’s nothing like sugar to quicken the pace of tooth decay. Cutting down on sugar intake is, therefore, one of the healthiest things you can do for your dental health. When you eat healthy, home-cooked foods you can substantially reduce the number of appointments and emergency trips to your dentist.
To that end, eat more vegetables and fruits such as baby carrots, celery, and apples. These foods naturally boost saliva production. Fibrous vegetables also act as a natural toothbrush. Additionally, you could try chewing sugar-free gums to increase saliva production that should neutralize the level of acid in your mouth.
Ensure Routine Dental Visits
Ideally, you should visit your dentist (including pediatric dentists) every 6 months to get regular cleaning and examination performed. There are stubborn buildups of plaque and deposits of debris that regular brushing cannot eliminate. Only a dentist can clean that.
Regular visits can almost guarantee zero gum diseases and cavities. That’s because, during the examination, a dentist will carefully look for signs of the cavity and other oral health issues. He would accordingly recommend early preventive measures and care.
As you can see, when it comes to oral health little things can go a long way. Instead of neglecting your dental health/hygiene for years and then suddenly undergoing a major treatment, it’s better to keep regular tabs on little things such as regular flossing, routine appointments, hydration, and eating right.
In the end, there’s nothing like healthy habits to minimize the number of dental emergencies in a lifetime.