Dental emergencies are an unfortunate part of life. You’re eating something crunchy and suddenly a tooth cracks, or you wake up in the morning with swelling and pain in your jaw.
Many people head straight to the emergency room when they have tooth pain. The truth is that this is inefficient and usually not very helpful. Most emergency rooms aren’t set up to handle dental emergencies. They might be able to give you some antibiotics if your emergency is caused by an infection, but they will still advise you to see your dentist as soon as possible. For this small service, you are likely to be hit with a huge co-pay or bill.
Call our office instead. We’ll get you in quickly, relieve your pain, and come up with a treatment plan for your problem. This saves you both money and time, not to mention days of dental pain. Of course, if you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency, please go to your local emergency room.
Common Dental Emergencies
What are the most common reasons that people need emergency dental care?
Sudden Tooth Pain – Significant tooth pain with no apparent cause results in many an emergency dental visit. Tooth pain should never be ignored. Many serious conditions can cause tooth pain, including:
- Cavities that have penetrated deep into the tooth
- Advanced gum disease
- An abscessed tooth
- Exposed tooth roots
- An impacted tooth
These conditions should be treated promptly to prevent further damage to the tooth or spreading of the infection.
Chipped or Fractured Teeth – Chipped or broken teeth can be caused by sudden trauma to the mouth or by simply biting down on a hard object. Sometimes this happens because you had a cavity and didn’t know it, and the internal structure has been weakened. If possible, keep the chip or piece that broke off of the tooth and bring it with you to your appointment.
Lost Teeth – Whether your tooth was knocked out due to an injury or you lost a tooth for no apparent reason, losing a tooth is a dental emergency. In some cases, we can replace the tooth if we can get to it fast enough, but sometimes a lost tooth will have to be replaced with a dental implant or a bridge. Our chances of saving the tooth are best if you retrieve the tooth and quickly rinse it with cool water, avoiding the root area. Try to replace the tooth back in the socket, but don’t force it. If the tooth can’t be replaced in the socket, keep it in a glass of milk. Call our office immediately.
Other Dental Emergencies
Some of the other reasons we would need to see you quickly include:
- A tooth has become dislodged (but not fully knocked out).
- An object is stuck between your teeth that can’t be removed with brushing or dental floss.
- A filling or crown has fallen out.
- You are experiencing a painful dental abscess.
- Injury to the gums or palate has occurred.
Call our office for an appointment for any dental emergency.