Basics of a Dental Emergency Kit
Preparing a dental emergency kit is similar to building a first aid kit, but the focus is obviously on dental injuries rather than cuts, grazes and burns. The purpose of such a kit is to provide rapid treatment for dental injuries as a stop-gap before seeing a dentist. First aid is not designed to replace visiting a dentist—then again, if you’re hiding out in a bunker and the world has ended, there isn’t likely to be a local dentist to help you out anyway!
What should my kit contain?
A dental emergency kit needs to cover the bases in terms of possible dental injuries. Suggested content includes:
- Storage container to hold teeth that have been dislodged
- Sterile gloves
- A dental mirror
- Clove gel
- Cotton buds
- Dental spatula
- Filling instruments
- Dental cement
- Syringe and sterile needle
A dental first aid kit is not intended to replace seeing a dentist, but it enables problems to be treated immediately. This will improve the chances of successful treatment and ensure something as simple as toothache isn’t your downfall in times of need. An emergency dental kit could prove highly beneficial in the following situations:
- Dislodged tooth
- Lost or loose fillings
- Severe toothache
- Loose crowns
First aid advice
Unfortunately, there is no getting around the fact that accidents happen and often it is impossible to prevent injuries. So it’s important to know how to deal with dental emergencies when they arise, especially if your local dentist (or any dentist) is no longer accessible.
If your tooth is dislodged, it may actually be possible to salvage it. You can try and re-implant it yourself by gently guiding it into the socket or you can store it in a container covered with saliva, or milk, to keep it moist. If you don’t have a container available (there should be one in your dental first aid kit), hold the tooth between your cheek and gum until you see a dentist if you can find one (this is not recommended for children, as they may swallow the tooth). When you touch the tooth, avoid touching the root.
If the tooth is broken or if a fragment has broken off, do not try to re-implant it, as the fragment may damage the socket. Instead, store the pieces as you would a dislodged tooth and see a dentist as quickly as possible, where applicable.
If you experience sudden toothache, clove gel can help to ease pain. This may a sign of an underlying problem, though, even if the pain starts to subside.
A kit for dental emergencies can only get you so far. You will need to improve your knowledge base if you want to survive without a dentist.
When you buy a dental emergency kit make sure that you are familiar with the contents and how to use them, so that you don’t have to waste time talking to others, seeking advice or reading instructions in the event of an emergency.
Richard Keane is from http://www.dentalimplant.co.uk and he’s already got his dental emergency kit ready at home.