It is important to be aware that dentists can only provide emergency dental appointments to patients who are ‘well’ and not thought to be infected with Covid19. If you are unwell with suspected Covid19, they ask that you do not attend the practice. The NHS advice is currently to self isolate at home for 7 days and then seek the dental treatment you require after this period. If you feel you cannot wait this long, then you are advised to ring NHS111 where you will be told how to access the necessary care.
- If you are self-isolating and or social distancing then attending for dental appointments is not possible.
- If you can get to the surgery the treatment they can provide is very limited at the moment.
- Practices are operating a telephone help line for emergencies and treatment if totally unavoidable.
- If you have symptoms of Covid 19 (new persistent cough and/or fever you should not attend the practice).
Advice on Common issues faced
- If you have a swelling on your face or difficulty swallowing, this requires urgent professional attention so don't be afraid to phone your surgery for advice.
- If you have dental pain there are a few things you can try to manage the pain until normal services can resume.
Pain from teeth
If the tooth is acutely sensitive to temperature, antibiotics will not fix this. The decay needs to be removed to allow the tooth to heal. If the bacteria have caused irreversible damage to the nerve in the tooth then a root filling is required or the tooth needs to be extracted.
• If there is a cavity in the tooth, a temporary filling material can be packed into this space. These temporary filling kits are widely available from supermarkets or pharmacies.
• Don't stop taking the anti-inflammatory when the pain stops (or it will come back again!) You are wanting to reduce the inflammation of the nerve in the tooth which is causing the pain.
• Aesthetic gel such as Orajel applied to the area can help to numb the pain.
• Keep your head elevated at night time- When you lie down to go to sleep, the blood pressure in the tooth can increase which increases pain. An extra pillow at night time can help If there is an infection - (a swelling next to the tooth or pus discharging from the gum or around the tooth)
• Dissolve a spoonful of salt in warm water and rinse around your mouth/ hold it in your mouth next to the infected area. Repeat several times until the pain subsides.
- • Rinse your mouth with warm salty mouthwash to try and draw out the infection into your mouth.
- • Keep the area cold- reducing blood flow to an area will reduce the inflammation and pain. Apply a cold compress to your face next to the sore tooth, do not apply ice directly to a tooth as this can increase the pain as toothaches are quite sensitive to hot and cold temperatures.
- • Clove Oil - This essential oil can be found in health food stores and you can apply it onto the painful tooth with a cotton bud. This works well if there is an exposed nerve due to deep decay but for it to work, you need to place it onto the exposed nerve
- • Desensitizing toothpaste such as Sensodyne repair and protect or Colgate sensitive pro relief can help.
- • Anti-inflammatory tablets (NSAIDs) can reduce the sensitivity. A combination of ibuprofen and paracetamol has been found to be beneficial if you can take them both. The dose is for an adult 400mg Ibuprofen and 1g of Paracetamol 4 times a day. Do not exceed this dose. However, there are some reports that Ibuprofen may increase the symptoms of COVID-19 so Paracetamol alone is probably best if you have symptoms. Make sure you don't exceed the recommended dosage!
- To help manage toothache until you can visit us, there are a few things that may help reduce the pain:
- Decay is a bacterial infection of a tooth. If the bacteria gets close to the nerve in a tooth, it can cause the tooth to be acutely sensitive. As the infection causing inflammation of the nerve gets worse, the ligaments holding the tooth in position can also get inflamed which causes pain on biting.
DENTIST – Advice on common issues faced:
- Never put heat externally on your face as this can draw the infection into the tissues in your face causing external swellings.
- Pain from gums • Thoroughly clean the area with floss or an interdental brush. You could put Corsodyl gel onto the brush to help clean the area Pain from ulcers • To reduce the discomfort, you can try a topical anesthetic gel such as Orajel
- Mouth ulcers can be a sign of underlying medical conditions such as iron deficiency so shouldn't be ignored. Any mouth ulcer which doesn't heal in two weeks should be checked by a dentist.
- Rinsing thoroughly with Corsodyl mouthwash can help (but Corsodyl will stain your teeth so we don’t recommend this for long term use)
- If there is bacteria or food debris trapped between the gum and the tooth, this can cause pain.
- To help with healing of ulcers, Gengigel can be effective as well as soothing the pain. Broken ToothThe sensitivity can be reduced by rubbing a de-sensitising toothpaste onto the tooth or placing a temporary filling material over the broken corner until a more definitive filling can be placed. Keep the area clean by brushing and using interdental brushes.
- For our patients suffering with broken teeth or lost fillings. Although this can be very annoying, problems of this nature are not often considered an urgent dental emergency. Newly fractured teeth can often be quite sensitive initially and then become more comfortable after a few days.
- If a tooth or filling has chipped or cracked, this can cause sensitivity from the tooth being exposed or pain to your tongue from sharp edges.