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Emergency field dental skills

Discussion in 'Survival Medicine' started by Paradoc, Feb 27, 2007.

  1. Paradoc

    Paradoc Retired Combat Medic

    Emergency field dental skills

    I know everyone stocks up on medical supplies, but we neglect the dental side of things, nothing will take you out of commission quicker than a broken tooth/filling so here is my list of goodies for emergency dental care.

    If anyone has anything else to add please feel free to do so, I am not the dental expert but just rely on what I was taught as part of combat medicine. I got to thinking about this as I have to have a root canal done on a tooth that has been filled too many times (filling is broken again) and is now infected and extremely painful.
    - Updated supply list with quantity


    Dental examination mirror
    Dental pick
    12 yds dental floss
    Cotton-tipped applicators
    Clove oil extract
    Temporary filling material pkg
    Salt packets (for rinses)
    Cotton rolls (make your own)
    Small cotton balls
    3" x 3" sterile gauze pads

    1 SM btl Listerine (disinfecting, cleansing area)
    4 ziplock bags for preserving lost teeth
    1 btl sterile water
    1 packet of plain paraffin wax

    1 btl naproxen sodium (naprosyn) an NSAID I prefer to Ibuprofen simply because dosage is lower and it is stronger.
    1 btl tylenol
    1 btl aspirin


    Broken teeth/lost filling can be treated by applying a Q-tip soaked in clove oil directly into the cavity/opening to numb the nerve and prevent air entry. After the initial pain subsides, NSAIDs/tylenol for inflammation/pain control and temporary filling material applied to seal the area (you must seek dental help after this point). do not get clove oil onto surrounding tissue, just in the tooth cavity/broken area.

    The IRM material or paraffin wax can be used to "splint" loose/broken teeth in place as well, followed by padding with gauze or cotton balls to stabilize the area.

    The other supplies can be used for rinses for ulcers, bleeding gums, etc.

    There is a lot of things you can do for yourself until you can get competent treatment, just have to be creative and plan accordingly.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2015
    Ura-Ki, Dunerunner, GOG and 1 other person like this.
  2. Bear

    Bear Monkey+++ Site Supporter+++ Founding Member Iron Monkey

    Good post and worth alot of consideration.... I've got some emergency dental kits with some of those items....

    Where there is no Dentist.... good book... I think there's a free downloadable version listed somewhere on this forum

    If not... here's the link...
    Books and Resources | Hesperian Health Guides
    They've got other good stuff too....

    I'm particularly interested in the female issues as I have a little girl and ... well... I'm just not familiar with them.... there's a good download there as well...

    maybe not the very best info... but its a start for us amateurs....

    I had a filling that went bad... then I had to have a root canal... then it went bad and hurt like the dickens.... then I had to go see a specialist... then my face started to swell up... then I had to go see an oral surgeon for an emergency extraction....
    My dentist said it must have been pretty bad .... because for an oral surgeon to say it was a bad infection... it had to be very very bad... anyway... the surgeon actually had to scrape the jaw a bit.... and I was on heavy meds for a while... guess they didn't want that getting anywhere else and spreading....
    Don't fool around with that infected or bad root canal stuff... no fun....

    All the more reason to know about this stuff....
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2015
    Motomom34 likes this.
  3. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    Good info..... but I think if tshtf that everyone is hoping that none of the dentists will be around anymore and we could just forget about it ;)
  4. Scavenger Flatbedder

    Scavenger Flatbedder Scavenging The Wasteland

    Thanks Paradoc.A good reminder for everyone.
  5. Tracy

    Tracy Insatiably Curious Moderator Founding Member

    I didn't see Superglue on your list - I've heard of people using that to get through a camping trip until they could get to a dentist.

    Be careful what you say, Blackjack - our resident dental monkey will survive ;).

    As for girlie-girl stuff, Bear - any female should be able to answer any questions you might have. And you always have the female monkeys at your disposal for instant answers.
  6. Bear

    Bear Monkey+++ Site Supporter+++ Founding Member Iron Monkey

    "As for girlie-girl stuff, Bear - any female should be able to answer any questions you might have. And you always have the female monkeys at your disposal for instant answers."

    Thanks Tracy..... Had a scare last year.... my little girl had a lump right under her left nipple.... you could actually feel it and it was pretty large and hard.... and she was complaining it was sore.... well I made a doctors appointment as quick as I could and took her in as soon as I could.... turned out to be a breast bud and the doctor said she was just "growing up"... scared the crap out of me and boy I was not too happy with my ex and mom for not even supposing it could be that.... glad I checked.... but some of us male monkeys don't have a clue .....NO!! [LMAO] NO!!
    ExHelot likes this.
  7. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    OT, but I was a King last weekend when my daughter proclaimed to my wife that there were no tampons in the house.

    I think I have over 3000 in various styles and sizes and slipped out to the ark to grab a sampler pack. My daughter looked at me a little funny when I handed them to her and asked me "You really do have 2 of EVERYTHING, don'tcha Dad?"
    john316 and RangerRick like this.
  8. Bear

    Bear Monkey+++ Site Supporter+++ Founding Member Iron Monkey

    "You really do have 2 of EVERYTHING, don'tcha Dad?"

  9. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    hehehe. 'Bout as funny as a two "pronged" billy goat.[LMAO][LMAO][LMAO]
  10. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Thanks Paradoc, this is very useful. Not just for Armageddon, but for everyday use as for a lot of folks they can't get in to the dentist as quick as they would like, or they might be out in the middle of BFE and not be able to get to one. Thanks for the info.

    I feel a sticky coming.
  11. Paradoc

    Paradoc Retired Combat Medic

    I am going to pull up some of my field treatment plans, and add more treatment protocols for various ailments that you can do something with in a pinch if you can't get to a dentist or if SHTF and there is no dentist.
  12. phishi

    phishi Psy-Ops Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Please do. We all could benefit.

  13. Paradoc

    Paradoc Retired Combat Medic

    Updated supply list with quantities in OP.
  14. snowbyrd

    snowbyrd Latet anguis in herba

    Just hit this one, again, and remembered another time when "AMBISOL" by trade name was used for numbing other than teeth or gums. A good friend of mine had a boil between his 'uh' sack and brown eye. I had him take a nice long bath and a good scrub down in that area then used the "AMBISOL" to numb the area. After Betadine and gloves I told him to lay back and before he did I exsized the boil. STINK bad really bad.....Different than a tooth but the numbing things for teeth can be used for other things..I hope no one is offended just another thing in my long strange life......stinkbyrd, still [tytyty]
  15. RightHand

    RightHand Pioneer in a New World Moderator Founding Member

    The art of being prepared is thinking about things most people don't want to think about... Good tip snowbyrd. Thanks
  16. Bear

    Bear Monkey+++ Site Supporter+++ Founding Member Iron Monkey

    Current issue of Backwoods Home Magazine has a pretty good (painful just reading it!) article... Wilderness Dentistry.... guy has a molar split in two eating some dried peanuts... story is about how he extracts his own tooth after the roots obviously become infected and his jaw begins to swell... Linesman plier and Spyderco knife... Yikes!!!!
    Len McDougall.... author and Wilderness Guide /Survival Instructor for Timberwolf Wilderness Adventures out of Paradise Michigan....
    Keep your teeth healthy and don't forget the tooth brushes and paste in the kits....
  17. Jonas Parker

    Jonas Parker Hooligan

    There is a denture repair kit available at Wal-Mart which anyone with dentures should have. When your "store teeth" break, this will fix them up good as new...
  18. BAT1

    BAT1 Cowboys know no fear

    Very good info. Clove helps with pain. Here are some nutritional preventive measures. The leading theory is that sugars cause bacteria that cause acids which cause tooth decay. Stay away from refined sugars, xylitol, and flouride. What you say? Hitler used flouride on the masses to keep them sedate. Flouride causes more harm than good in the long run. It is a very agressive substance. Man made flouride is a by product of the aluminum smelting. Keep your teeth clean, don't use antibacterial pastes that cause resistant bacterias. Ghee on your food, Raw milk, not pasterized, the few coliforms are benificial. Make soups and keep the bones in utilizing the marrows in your stock. Try to use grass fed protiens. Aborigonees have immunity to cavities until they start eating man made sugars. Use maple syrup, honey and stevia. Sunlight creates vitamin D. Here are some websites:
    www.curetoothdecay.com, save raw milk .com, realmilk .com your return .com.
  19. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    She will, and maybe I cant get her to post more to this thread, Shes pretty busy instructing at the dental school, but they are on break right now, maybe she will have time.
  20. Amy

    Amy Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Wow, great thread, sorry I've been MIA for a while. I think the list posted by Paradoc is a great start. Nearly all the items are available over the counter, except IRM (intermediate restorative material - which has oil of clove in it). The temporary filling material you can by in the drug store is a little hard to manage, but basically is mixed, rolled into a little ball and placed in the hole via a finger. The material only lasts for a couple days, and will stay in place better if you avoid chewing on the affected tooth. Another thing to remember is that if the cavity or fracture extends into the nerve of the tooth, there has been bacterial contamination, if you "plug the hole" w/ anything, the bacteria is still in the pulp chamber and will most likely cause an abscess - therefore requireing a root canal (or as a last resort, an extraction).

    I thought of a couple other simple things, Iodine (I think someone else mentioned "betadine", same thing, just brand name) is a great all around broad spectrum antimicrobial, which tastes horrible, but works good for irrigating the gums if that is the problem. It can be bought at Rite Aid. Be carefull for those people with any allergy to metals - esp. iron. (It can also be used to disinfect a surface wound on the skin, but does stain clothing)

    Also, hydrogen peroxide, the standard over the counter percentage is a great antimicrobial (again, for irrigating below the gumline - as most bacteria living there are anaerobic). I don't think regular everyday rinsing with it is good for the soft tissues that line the oral cavity, so save it for when you really need it, below the gumline.

    Remember, all dental disease is preventable with good daily brushing and flossing, so stock up on those two items! I realize that teeth fracture, especially those w/ older silver fillings, but most problems can be prevented. Fluoride is not an enemy (yes I've "Googled" it, and there is more bad than good available to the lay public, but don't believe it). It is only bad if you let little kids get ahold of it and drink the stuff while their permenant teeth are developing - this causes fluorosis, which is a defect in the formation of the enamel (and it looks bad). Used as a topical application, it strengthens enamel AND root surfaces (as we get older and experience gum recession - roots become exposed and can be a common source of hot/cold sensitivity). Anyway, ACT fluoride rinse is available anywhere they sell toothbrushes, and is fairly inexpensive. I don't know the exact shelf life, but could do some digging to get an estimate if anyone would like to know.

    OK, that is probably good for now, I don't show up here too often, but when I do, you can count on a short novel length entry. This thread has inspired me, and I will be back to check on it, thanks!
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