A fall, an errant elbow during a pick-up basketball game or an unusually hard piece of candy can all cause problems for your mouth. How? By chipping one of your teeth. If you bit down, got hit or otherwise injured your mouth in some other way and then felt that unmistakable hard, tooth-like fragment, you know you've got a chip. To start with, don't stress. A dentist can fix this problem easily. Plenty of children and adults crack or chip their teeth. The dentist has the know-how to fix your tooth and make it look just like a natural, uninjured one.
What do you need to do if you chip a tooth? Take a look at few steps to follow as you wait to get professional dental care.
Call the Dentist
It's Saturday at 6 p.m. and you chip your tooth. It seems bad, but you aren't sure. Don't wait until Monday morning to get help. Most dentists take emergency calls at night and on weekends. Call the dentist right away and explain what happened. If the dentist feels that your tooth warrants immediate attention, they'll ask you to come in.
If you're in extreme pain, let the dentist know. They're likely to make getting you the help you need a priority if they know that you can't eat or sleep due to how your mouth feels.
Wrap Your Tooth
A jagged edge from a broken tooth can cut the inside of your mouth or your tongue, making you feel worse than you already do. There's a simple solution for this problem. While you wait to see the dentist, wrap the jagged part of your tooth in paraffin wax (the type that orthodontic patients use over brackets on braces) or sugar-free gum. Do not sleep with wax or gum on your tooth. This poses a choking hazard. Only try this trick if you're able to stay awake.
Relieve the Pain
You don't have to just deal with the pain as you wait for your appointment. Ask the dentist what you can take at home. It's likely that you'll be able to take an over the counter pain reliever, such as acetaminophen. You can also try a warm salt water rinse to take away some of the sting.
Along with these tips, avoid any hard, sharp or tough foods until after your tooth is repaired. These can aggravate the problem. If you feel alright now, and then somehow injure your mouth again or have more pain, call the dentist immediately. They'll need to know about any changes before you come in.
Remember, your tooth won't stay broken forever. The dentist can either restore it or, in some sever cases, replace it. Whatever the fix is, you'll be back to normal before you know it.