Dental emergencies happen all the time. Whether it’s a painful toothache, an abscess, or a cracked or chipped tooth, there are a variety of dental emergencies that need to be treated right away and delaying treatment may make the problem worse or cause irreparable damage. So, when should you seek emergency care for an oral emergency?
To determine whether you require emergency dental care, it is a good idea to consider the following:
- Are you experiencing severe pain or bleeding?
- Has a tooth come out? (Emergency treatment can potentially rescue a tooth)
- Do you possibly have an infection? An abscess or severe mouth infection can be potentially life threatening and requires urgent medical assistance
Any dental problem that requires immediate treatment to stop significant pain, bleeding, or to save a tooth is considered an emergency as is requires prompt care by a professional.
Non-emergency dental conditions are ones that can wait a few days until you see your dentist. A chipped tooth or lost crown that isn’t causing pain or trauma to the mouth or a mild toothache are conditions that do not usually require urgent dental care.
Some common dental emergencies that you should seek immediate care for are below.
A fractured, cracked, or chipped tooth can result from a variety of issues, including chewing on hard foods like nuts or hard candy, from grinding teeth at night, a sporting injury, or a blow to the mouth. Teeth also deteriorate with age, meaning they are more susceptible to damage and breakage as we get older. A badly cracked or fractured tooth can cause symptoms like:
- Significant pain (especially when chewing or biting)
- Sensitivity to heat, cold, or sweetness
- Swelling of the gums surrounding the affected tooth
- Pain that comes and goes
It is important to visit a dentist as soon as possible to protect your teeth from additional problems, such as further damage or infection. In some circumstances, the tooth may need to be removed to prevent further issues.
Missing or Knocked Out Teeth
It is possible, in some situations, for a dentist to preserve and reinstall a tooth that has come out. This requires quick action to save the tooth. If a tooth does come out, for the best chances of saving it, it is recommended that you pick up the tooth by the top part (taking care not to touch the root), rinse it (without scrubbing) and if possible, try to reinsert the tooth in to the socket until you can reach the dentist. If it can’t be reinserted, place the tooth in a small container of milk and get to a dentist as soon as possible.
A painful toothache is a warning sign that there could be a serious dental issue. A painful toothache may indicate an abscess or infection which may require urgent medical treatment.
A dental abscess is typically caused by a bacterial infection and is a build-up of pus. It is a serious condition that can become life threatening if left untreated. An abscess can cause fever, swelling, a persistent and painful toothache, and sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures. In some cases, it can cause tenderness in the lymph nodes in your neck.
If you suspect you have an abscess, rinse your mouth with mild salt water to clean the area and get to your dentist immediately.
Dedicated Dental Care in Henderson, Nevada
Dedicated Dental provides emergency dental services and same day appointments for patients in Henderson, Nevada. We offer emergency dental care for chipped, broken and fractured teeth, painful toothache, emergency tooth extraction, replacement crowns, and fillings and can help if a tooth gets knocked out. If you have any questions regarding dental emergencies or any other aspects of dental care, or if you would like to schedule a visit, call us today at (702) 566-5509, or request an appointment online.