Minor and Advanced Dental Treatment Options
What services are available if you crack a filling or have severe toothache during the Covid-19 pandemic?
The government-enforced lockdown during the Covid-19 pandemic has changed our daily lives and this includes our access to dental care. Regular check-ups and hygiene appointments have been postponed for the foreseeable future as dental practitioners and members of the public wait to see when the lockdown rules might be lifted.
In the meantime, if you do experience a dental incident or any symptoms that would usually warrant a trip to the dentist, you may be wondering what your options are. This guide will help you to determine which situations might require ‘urgent care’.
If you have any minor dental issues such as a broken filling or crown, then you can invest in a temporary dental kit from a local pharmacy or supplier such as Amazon. This type of kit will allow you to treat your issue at home, so long as you’re not in too much physical discomfort. This is a great step to take whilst you’re waiting to see a dentist. You may wish to speak to your dentist over the phone to ask for advice before doing so.
If you have a dental situation which involves more advanced levels of pain that you’re not able to self-manage, then it would be reasonable to suggest that you may need to see a dentist. Any extensive swelling, prolonged pain or toothache which is affecting your ability to eat, drink or sleep should be dealt with. You should contact your local dentist to see what services they are able to offer you at this time. This may begin with a triage consultation by either phone or video. A Chelmsford dentist explains that remote consultations are working well for both dental staff and patients who have been happy to adapt to this style of remote care.
In the event that your symptoms are causing you pain, you can take regular paracetamol or ibuprofen until you’re able to see a dentist who may prescribe you with a course of antibiotics or stronger painkillers as required. However, if you are also experiencing symptoms of Covid-19, it is important that you avoid taking ibuprofen. You should also address the reason for the pain and take steps such as reducing sugary food or beverages and pay attention to your dental hygiene routine to ensure that your teeth and gums are being correctly maintained.
Some dental incidents can be severe and may even be life threatening if you do not take the correct action. If loss of consciousness has occurred, or there is severe swelling to the throat or eye that is causing vision loss or your airways to be constricted, then you, or a family member, should call 111 immediately to seek medical advice.
None of us know how long lockdown will continue for, or when social distancing restrictions may be eased. Therefore, it’s important to take these intermediate steps to keep on top of our dental care until we’re all able to get back to the surgery for regular check-ups once again.