Emergency dentistry focuses on unanticipated dental issues that require prompt, if not immediate, dental attention. Dental emergencies, if ignored, could worsen the dental issue, necessitating more complex and expensive treatment and putting your dental health at risk.
There are plenty of dental situations that qualify as dental emergencies. For example, profuse bleeding from the teeth or gums is a dental emergency requiring prompt treatment to stop the bleeding. You may sustain bleeding from severe gum disease, cuts while eating, or facial trauma. Either way, it’s important to seek prompt emergency dental attention.
A knocked-out or displaced tooth is also a dental emergency. Knocking out or displacing your teeth is incredibly painful; immediate dental attention is necessary to dampen the pain. You can even salvage the tooth if you can get a dentist to put it back in place within 60 minutes of it falling out.
Our priority is to keep you informed, every step of the way. Here are a few questions that our patients frequently ask.
Seeing the dentist within the first hour of your dental emergency will help stop the pain, increase the chances of saving your damaged teeth, and prevent the situation from spiraling out of control. However, not all dental complications always require immediate care. The best way to find out how soon to seek treatment is to call your dentist right away for their guidance.
Whether your toothache is a dental emergency depends on the cause of the toothache, the extent of the pain, and whether over-the-counter pain medication helps with the pain. Toothaches from knocked-out or chipped teeth are dental emergencies. Toothaches that are caused by severe decay or infection can be debilitating, and should be addressed immediately.
First off, remain calm and collect the knocked-out tooth and all the fragments. Place the tooth and its fragments in container of cold milk or saliva before seeing the dentist. Keep the tooth clean, and avoid probing the empty socket with your tongue or finger.
Pain is characteristic of most dental emergencies and can sometimes feel unbearable. To manage this pain, you can use an over-the-counter anesthetic called benzocaine that provides immediate pain relief. Alternatively, you can try store-bought pain medications, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, although they may not be as effective as you’d want. Consider using a cold compress to help mitigate swelling and a warm water salt rinse to remove any tooth fragments or debris from your mouth.
You may get a dental emergency when you’re out of town or your regular dentist is simply unavailable. If this is the case, your best bet is to check the local directories for any dentist offering 24-hour emergency dental services.