How to Prevent Dental Emergencies
Learn How You Can Protect Your Smile
As Benjamin Franklin famously said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” He may have been talking about fire awareness and prevention, but the same principle also applies to dental care. While it’s not always possible to avoid a dental emergency, there are many precautions you can take to greatly reduce their chances of occurring and harming your smile. Here are three simple steps that our team at Bluebonnet Dental recommends in order to prevent dental emergencies. If an emergency occurs despite your best efforts, don’t be afraid to call us for a same-day appointment!
Watch What You Eat
Delicious as they may be, certain hard and crunchy foods can wreak havoc on your smile. Chewing on ice, cracking nuts with your teeth, and munching on hard candy can crack your teeth. Dental restorations, such as crowns or dentures, can also become damaged.
If you simply can’t resist a yummy, juicy apple, cut it into smaller chunks first to minimize the risk that the crunch will hurt your teeth. Other items, like hard candy and ice, should be avoided altogether. Not only can they chip your teeth, but the high sugar content of hard candy puts your teeth at a higher risk for cavities.
Protect Your Pearly Whites
If you play sports in any capacity, even if it’s not a contact sport, you’ll want to invest in a mouthguard. This device should protect your teeth and soft tissues from injury during physical activity. Dr. Barker can even make you a custom mouthguard that fits more comfortably and protects your smile more effectively than the mouthguards you can find at the sporting goods store.
Not interested in sports, but suffer from chronic teeth grinding instead? We can also make a personalized oral appliance called a nightguard. By wearing it when you go to bed, your top and bottom teeth are prevented from making harmful contact while you sleep. A nightguard also relaxes your facial muscles and jaw, leading to much less jaw pain.
Keep Up with Your Oral Hygiene
Daily brushing, flossing, and rinsing with mouthwash can go a long way in preventing tooth decay and infections that result in seriously painful toothaches. For extra protection, make sure your toothpaste and mouthwash contain fluoride. This naturally occurring mineral strengthens your tooth enamel, reducing your risk of getting cavities.
Also, make sure to visit us for your routine checkups and cleanings every six months. At these appointments, Dr. Barker can detect small oral health issues and treat them before they spiral into larger, more painful, and costlier emergencies.