As an emergency dentist in Queens and and emergency dentist in NYC I have basically seen it all. Canker sores, broken teeth, chipped teeth, lost teeth. Here is some advice for those that may experience a dental emergency. 

Often I receive frequent complaints about canker sores. I suggest  that people with frequent canker sores check to see if their toothpaste contains sodium lauryl sulfate, or SLS. SLS is a foaming agent that in some studies has been linked to the development of canker sores. Toothpaste that doesn't contain SLS usually makes a big deal about it by saying 'SLS free' on its label.  An additional remedy for both canker sores and gum pain is tea tree oil. Tea tree oil should be applied directly to the infected site and can even be purchased in mouthwash form to soothe inflammation. Another preventive measure for canker sores is to avoid eating chips and other jagged foods that can cause tiny cuts and scrapes, which can be an entryway for a virus to set up shop in your mouth. Besides that, stay away from foods that trigger canker sores. Potential troublemakers include whole wheat, rye, barley, shellfish, pineapple, chocolate and tomatoes, as well as salty or citrus fruits. There is a remedy of 1/3 Mylanta, 1/3 Benedryl, and1/3 viscous Lidocaine. This will ease the discomfort of canker soars.

It should be further noted that about 80 percent of our population deals with gum problems - from gingivitis all the way up to losing teeth. Ginseng can be used to alleviate the pain associated with irritated gum tissue. A ginseng tonic can be directly applied to the gum to promote circulation and speed healing. An additional home remedy suggestion is to use a wet tea bag for tooth or gum pain. Tea contains astringent tannins, which have the power to shrink swollen tissue and stop bleeding. No toothache will heal on its own. A toothache is a dental problem that needs to be treated as soon as possible.

What should you do if you've knocked out a tooth - whether from a blow, a fall or accident?

Shake off debris (rinsing or scrubbing could remove important periodontal ligament), place it in a container of milk or back in its socket and try to reach the dentist within 30 minutes. Unfortunately, not all teeth can be saved. Alternative methods, such as a bridge or implants, may need to be considered.

What should you do if you've broken a tooth?

Again, if you've lost the broken piece, just get to the dentist. If you have it, gently shake off surface dirt and definitely keep it. Even if the piece can't be bonded back to the original tooth, it can be used to help re-create the look of that tooth.

If something (food, other foreign matter) is wedged between your teeth, should you try to dislodge it?

Gentle flossing or brushing is fine, but if the object does not respond to that treatment and the surrounding gum begins to swell, make an appointment with your dentist. A bit of broken filling or chipped enamel can throw your bite off and make you panic. Popcorn husks are one of the worst problems and occasionally need to be removed by a dentist.

What should you do if you lose a filling or crown?

If you lose a filling, it's not worth saving. However, just cover the hole with temporary material, do not try to put the old filling back in the tooth. If you lose a crown, you'll want to try and salvage it (you can use Temparin or Dentemp, available in pharmacies, to put the crown back in place until you can reach a dentist). In either case, visit the dentist as soon as possible. Many people don't realize that when a filling falls out, there's a reason for that, whether it's a cracked tooth or more severe. You need to see a dentist.


Dr. Marc Liechtung, D.M.D. and inventor of Snap-On Smile, graduated from The University of Pennsylvania, one of the most world-renowned dental schools, as well as having the best fellowship programs in the country. After graduation, he attended an Advanced Restorative and Implant fellowship at The University of Pennsylvania, and graduated from that fellowship in 1987. Dr. Marc Liechtung has had his prestigious dental practice for over 18 years, and is dedicated to each of his patients’ dental needs. Dr. Marc Liechtung believes in treating each of his patients on an individual basis, because needs and treatment differ from person to person. Dr. Liechtung is a member of the following professional organizations: New York City Dental Society, American Dental Association, Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, Mid-Manhattan Advanced Dental Study Club and has recently been Elected to a Fellowship in the International Academy for Dental Facial Esthetics.Marc Liechtung, DMD is the founder of Manhattan Dental Arts and the Inventor of the Snap-on-Smile®. Manhattan Dental Arts P.C. is located on the Upper West Side at 68th and Broadway. We specialize in dental cleanings,emergency dentistrydental implantsall-on-4 dental implants, full mouth reconstructiondental crownsroot canals,periodonticsSnap on Smile, dental bridgesdenturesextractionssmile makeovers and all forms of general and cosmetic dentistry. If you are looking for an emergency dentist in NYC then we offer free consultations. The practice group also owns Kew Gardens Dental Arts, a dental practice in Queens offering dental implants in Queensemergency dentistry in Queensteeth cleaning in Queensdental crownsdental bridges and all forms of cosmetic and general dentistry. If you are looking for a periodontist in Queens we offer all gum disease treatments at our practice for patients with all types of gum disease. 

You need to be a member of WebDental, LLC to add comments!

Join WebDental, LLC