If you feel you have a dental emergency within normal opening hours please telephone the practice where we will aim to provide an appointment within 24 hours with your normal dentist or a suitable alternative. True dental emergencies include a tooth being “knocked out” traumatically, severe toothache that lasts for a while and swelling of the face. We would always try to see a patient with any of these as soon as possible. If you have any of these out of normal hours please telephone the practice where an answer machine message will direct you to the on-call service in York.
Certain problems we class as urgencies rather than emergencies and we will aim to appoint any patient with these with the next available appointment with their own dentist. These include lost fillings, lost crowns, broken teeth or sensitive teeth. Again, out of normal hours please telephone the practice where an answer machine message will direct you to the on-call service in York.
What to do if a tooth is “knocked out”
First make sure it is a permanent tooth as milk teeth should not be repositioned if knocked out. Permanent teeth would be larger and have a long root whereas milk teeth would be much smaller, possibly without a root and be from a younger child.
Keep the patient as calm as possible
Find the tooth and pick it up by the crown, which is the whiter part that is normally visible in the mouth, and try not to touch the root.
If the tooth is dirty wash it gently for no more than ten seconds under cold running water and try to reposition the tooth taking care to place it the correct way round and matching the other tooth.
Bite on a clean handkerchief or similar to hold it in position.
If this is not possible place the tooth in a suitable storage medium such as saliva or a glass of milk. Do not store the tooth in water.
Seek emergency dental treatment as soon as possible
If a tooth has been out of its socket for more than an hour it’s prognosis or chances of surviving are very small. Even if it is out for five minutes its chances of long term survival are not great. However the aim is to replant it as soon as possible and allow it to remain in position until such a time when a dental implant can be place at an optimum time.