Sensitivity/pain after dental work: It is normal to have some discomfort after dental treatment. Some symptoms, such as cold sensitivity, could last as long as a year. A desensitizing toothpaste, such as Sensodyne, can be used to help with the sensitivity. Good oral hygiene (especially frequent brushing and flossing) must also be practiced in order for the restoration to heal. If the symptoms are improving even if gradually, then be patient with the healing process. If the symptoms are not improving or getting worse, then please call our office to schedule an appointment. Sometimes only a root canal will stop the sensitivity. Restorations that are altering the bite (i.e. the filling or crown feels too tall) will need to be addressed by the dentist to prevent delayed healing.
Pain in a tooth: First try an over the counter pain reliever such as ibuprofen or Aleve. Consult your physician to approve use of these medications prior to taking them. If over the counter medications are not sufficient, then see your physician or emergency room for a prescription pain reliever.
Swelling: The actual source of swelling can sometimes be difficult to determine, and the severity of the swelling can also vary. ANY SWELLING THAT PREVENTS SWALLOWING OR BREATHING SHOULD BE EVALUATED BY THE EMERGENCY ROOM IMMEDIATELY! Swelling limited to the edge of the gums beside a tooth may be caused by debris. Try to brush and floss the area well to remove the foreign particle.
Broken teeth that are sensitive or sharp and lost fillings/crowns: Most pharmacies carry temporary filling materials. Visit the dental health care section for these products. Orthodontic wax can also be used to cover rough areas on teeth. Temporary filling material may need replacement after meals.
Crowns or bridges that have come off: Most pharmacies carry temporary dental cement. Visit the dental health care section for this material. Denture adhesive can also be used to temporarily affix a crown or bridge if it is safe to do so. If the crown or bridge does not feel secure with these products, do not recement yourself to prevent the risk of swallowing or fracturing the crown or bridge. The crown or bridge will need to be recemented using a longer lasting cement by Dr. Congo or Dr. Dean when the office re-opens.
Pain in the jaw joint: If pain is being caused due to clenching or grinding of the teeth, then an over the counter bite guard can be used as a temporary measure. These are available in most pharmacies in the dental health care section.
If you are experiencing dental issues that are life threatening, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency facility immediately. If you have dental issues that require immediate assistance by the dentist, please call (256) 325-9393. After hour calls to the dentist may be subject to a fee.