Dental self-reliance is an overlooked aspect of preparedness. But toothaches can be extremely painful, and untreated oral infections can pose serious health risks. Fortunately, there are a few simple things you can obtain to care for your teeth in the event that a dentist is unavailable.
Obviously, you’ll want to keep your medicine cabinet stocked with extra toothbrushes, floss, and toothpaste. In addition, consider adding these items:
- Baking soda. Baking soda is a great all-purpose cleaning agent. It also makes a “toothpaste” when mixed with salt. Either bicarbonate or salt make a good oral rinse when mixed with water.
- Emergency filling/ crown repair kit. (Image) Filling/crown repair kits will allow you to fix (or, in survival scenarios, add) a filling or crown before you can see a dental professional. They are available over the counter in any good drugstore.
- Hydrogen peroxide. Peroxide can be used as a mouthwash to cleanse your mouth of bacteria that can cause gingivitis. Simply dilute it with water before use, and use it once or twice a day. It’s also great to have for disinfecting minor cuts.
- Tea. Tea bags can help to relieve pain and reduce bleeding if a tooth needs to be removed or gums are swollen.
- Clove oil. This essential oil decreases pain from toothaches. It’s handy when there’s no anesthetic around.
- Ginger. Biting peeled ginger is another way of temporarily relieving tooth pain. Ginger also aids in immunity and digestion.
In the event of a dental emergency here are some basic instructions.
- Toothaches: Clean the hole in the tooth wall to remove all food particles and swish with warm salt water. Take an anti-inflammatory medicine like asprin or ibuprofen. If the pain and swelling don;t go away antobiotics should be adminstered or in extreme situations, the tooth should be pulled.
- Abscesses: The same treatment as for toothache. The difference between the tow is that a toothache is the result of an infected cavity and an abscess is the result of the infection reaching the root and causing a pocket of pus .
- Gums: Inflamed gums should treated to cleaning and flossing to remove tartar and debris. Initially the gums will bleed but this will pass. Green vegetables, eggs, meat, beans and an red and yellow fruits provide the vitamin defense against gum disease.
- Toothbrush: Use a twig that’s sharpened at one end as a probe to get between your teeth. Chew the other end to loosen the wood fibers and use as a brush. A piece of rough towel wrapped around your finger and rubbed briskly against your teeth will also work in an emergency.