Dental Emergencies During Stay-At-Home Order
Dr. Popeck is guiding patients on what emergencies can be handled safely at home with products that can be found in the house; and which ones he recommends still heading to the doctor’s office and having the dentist handle.
For example, the following dental issues can be safely dealt with at home, according to Dr. Popeck:
- Re-cementing a temporary or permanent crown can. Dr. Popeck says to take the temporary crown off and rehearse placing it back on the tooth (the crown is in the correct place if teeth come together when biting down). Next, use the open end of a paperclip to scrape out the temporary cement inside the crown. (Be sure there is no temporary cement on the tooth). Finally, squeeze a few drops of Fixodent denture adhesive into the temporary crown and re-cement it back on the tooth.
- Removing a foreign body stuck in the gum. Dr. Popeck advises patients to tie a double knot in a strand of dental floss and then un the knotted portion of the dental floss between the teeth to scrape out the foreign body under the gum line.
- Lost fillings. If a filling comes out, Dr. Popeck suggests saving the piece to show your dentist. To temporarily fix the lost filling, gently brush the tooth with toothpaste and lukewarm water. Then, plug the hole using over-the-counter products such as Temparin or Dentemp until you can see a dentist.
- Chipped tooth leaving a jagged edge. Dr. Popeck says to cover the exposed area with dental wax, which can be found at most local drug stores. (Typically, DIY sealants are usually only good for up to 48 hours.) If necessary, use a nail file to file down the rough spots. However, it is important to keep the area covered until you can see a dentist.
- Suspicious mouth ulcers and other lesions. There are a few remedies to treat painful mouth ulcers and lesions at home, according to Dr. Popeck. These treatments include rinsing with saltwater and baking soda, covering the area with a baking soda paste, using a mouth rinse containing a steroid, or using over-the-counter benzocaine (topical anesthetic) products.
Dr. Jerry Popeck can be reached by calling 856-678-6393