Where There Is No Dentist 2012 79
3. Examine inside the mouth.
Remember what the person said, the person’s age, and what you saw.
Now look more closely at the problem area.
Look at the teeth:
• Is a new one growing in?
• Is a tooth loose?
• Is there a dark (dead) tooth?
Look at the gums:
• Are they red?
• Is there any swelling?
• Do they bleed?
• A re the gums eaten away
between the teeth?
Look also for sores on the inside of the cheek or lips, and on the tongue.
4. Touch the sore place.
Touching is a good way to find out how serious the problem is. This will
help you decide which treatment to give.
Push gently against each tooth in the area of pain to see if a tooth is
loose. Rock the loose tooth backward and forward between your fingers,
to see if it hurts when you move it.
Using the end of your mirror, tap against
several teeth, including the one you suspect.
There is probably
an abscess on a
tooth that hurts
when you tap it.
Press against the gums with cotton gauze. Wait a moment, and then look
closely to see if they start bleeding. Then use your probe gently to feel
under the gum for tartar. Carefully scrape some away. Wait and look again
to see if the gums bleed. When gums bleed, it is a sign of gum disease.