Dental crowns are common. When a tooth has been damaged due to decay or impact, a dental crown can restore it. However, just as real teeth can sometimes be damaged, dental crowns can also be damaged, and temporary crowns may fall off under some circumstances. Here’s what to do if your temporary or permanent dental crown falls off.
What to Do if Your Crown Falls Off on a Weekend or at Night
1. Stay Calm
Before we discuss what to do if your dental crown falls off, the first thing to remember is to stay calm. It can be alarming to lose your dental crown, but keep in mind that this can be fixed. It may be somewhat painful at first, but this damage is not permanent.
2. Inspect the Crown
Knowing what to do if your dental crown falls off partly depends on the state of the crown. If you can locate the crown, do so. Take a close look to assess the damage. If there is no tooth inside of the crown, this is a good sign that it may be possible to simply reattach once your dentist can see you. If you see a small bit of metal inside of the crown, this is normal. That is the crown’s post, which helps to keep it anchored to your tooth.
3. Call Your Dentist
Calling your dentist as soon as possible is one of the best things you can do if your dental crown falls off. Tell them what happened and request an emergency Las Vegas dental appointment. Your dentist may ask if you still have the crown and what state it is in. Make an appointment to replace or reattach the crown as soon as possible.
4. Clean the Crown
If you still have the crown, wash it off carefully with gentle soap and water. Put it in a safe place where it will stay clean, such as in a plastic bag. Keep it in a safe place, and remember to bring it with you when you visit your dentist.
5. Protect Your Tooth
Your crown would’ve been originally attached to protect a tooth that was damaged. It is important to know what to do if your dental crown falls off so you can protect the underlying tooth structures. The nerves and sensitive tissue of the tooth may now be exposed, and sensitive to touch and temperature. Go to a pharmacy and purchase temporary dental cement. Carefully mold the cement around the exposed tooth, following the instructions on the package. Dental wax may also be helpful to protect the tooth.
6. Avoid Certain Foods
Though your tooth will be temporarily protected, certain foods will dislodge the cement, expose the tooth, and harm the underlying structures. If your dental crown falls off, it’s a good idea to avoid crunchy, chewy, or tough foods. You may also find that especially hot or cold foods cause you pain. Until you can see your dentist to have the crown repaired, avoid these foods.
7. See Your Dentist
If you scheduled an emergency dental appointment, it shouldn’t take long to see your dentist. Bring the crown with you when you see your dentist, as it may be able to be reattached. If the crown was significantly damaged, you will probably need a new crown fitted.
Stop Dental Crowns From Falling Off Again
Now that you know what to do if your dental crown falls off, you may want to know why it fell off in the first place, and what you can do to stop this from happening again.
Dental crowns may fall off for a number of reasons. Here are the most common:
- Decay: if tooth decay eats away the structure that the crown is attached to, the crown will eventually unattach. Brushing twice a day and flossing once a day can prevent tooth decay from building up and damaging the underlying tooth structures.
- Impact: A heavy impact, such as that from contact sports, can dislodge the crown from sheer force. If you play sports where facial injuries are possible, always wear a helmet and mouthguard.
- Tough Foods: Biting down on especially hard foods, or seeds and other hard substances hidden in some foods, can damage your crown. Avoid these foods, and be careful about seeds and pits.
- Improper Fitting: If your crown was not properly attached or fitted to your tooth to begin with, it will fall off more easily. Look at reviews before visiting a dentist, ask questions, and always work with an experienced dentist for restorations.
Now that you know what to do if your dental crown falls off and how to stop it from happening again, hopefully the situation does not seem so alarming.
If you are in Lake Havasu, Arizona, or Las Vegas, Henderson or Laughlin, Nevada, please call us directly at (702) 388-8888. Even if your permanent or temporary crown falls off on a night or weekend, our Las Vegas Dentists can attend to your dental crown immediately, with weekend and late hours by appointment. Contact our offices and we will schedule your emergency appointment as quickly as possible.