Managing Dental Emergencies During COVID-19

You can suffer untold pain and potential medical complications that can put your life at risk due to dental injuries and diseases. Immediate and appropriate dental care can salvage the situation and prevent the problem from escalating. Unfortunately, COVID-19 is here with us and has complicated access to dental care. Dr. Juan Borja asserts that it is crucial for you to understand how to handle a dental emergency since this can be life-saving.

In March 2020, normal access to dental care changed with the CDC’s recommendation that elective procedures including surgeries and non-urgent dental services be postponed. In adherence to this directive, Delray Medical & Dental has limited dental services to essential care and emergencies. The staff at this facility is committed to prioritizing your health while protecting your oral health. Below is how to handle dental emergencies during COVID-19.

What is a Dental Emergency? 

A dental emergency encompasses conditions that put you at risk of medical complications, cause severe pain, and are life-threatening. The American Dental Association (ADA) notes that you should seek your dentist’s advice if you have the following dental emergencies:

  • Knocked-out or broken tooth
  • Post-surgical treatment to remove sutures or dressing change
  • Pain in your teeth or jawbone 
  • Constant bleeding that is not manageable at home
  • Gum swelling, with or without pain
  • Denture adjustment if you are undergoing cancer treatment
  • Any painful swelling in or around your mouth
  • Pain in your cheeks or gums due to adjustment of orthodontic wires

How Does COVID-19 Affect My Dental Emergency?

If you experience a dental problem and are not sure if this requires emergency treatment, reach out to Delray Medical & Dental immediately. The specialist at the facility will advise you on the next course of action using telehealth, prescriptions, and medical examinations. If your condition requires an in-office visit, the staff will ensure to adhere to the COVID-19 safety protocols, including patient screening, before treatment.

What to Do if You Cannot Get Immediate Treatment

Subject to your condition, dental first-aid comes in handy with helping your condition before you can access professional dental care. Call an ambulance if you have difficulty breathing, potential head or spinal injury, and uncontrolled breathing resulting from a dental emergency.

If you have lost a tooth due to trauma, handle the tooth by the chewing surface, gently rinse it in milk or clean water, but do not wipe off the broken particles since these are vital in successful replanting. Place the tooth in its socket, or if this is not possible, place in milk or salty water until you get to a dentist.

If you have a toothache, wash your mouth using warm salty water. Use over-the-counter painkillers for pain and swelling relief. Pain and swelling can also be relieved by using ice cubes over the injured tooth.  

If you have suffered a broken jaw, this may result in bruising and swelling. It may be hard for you to chew or speak due to misaligned teeth. Wrap a bandage beneath your jaw and attach it on top of your head to stabilize it before medical help is available.

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