Emergency Dentistry

Waking up to sharp pain in your jaw or experiencing an accident that leaves you with a chipped tooth is more than just an unpleasant event. It’s a dental emergency, and you need to see a dentist as soon as possible to resolve the problem. Instead of searching for an open emergency dentist at midnight or on a holiday, take a proactive approach. Find a dentist with emergency hours in your area while you’re feeling fine and keep their number in a convenient place. When you’re in pain or concerned about the risk of losing a tooth after an impact, you’ll know exactly who to call.

Common Types of Dental Emergencies

There are many ways to accidentally hurt your teeth during day-to-day life, and minor forms of damage aren’t necessarily an emergency. Yet anything that leaves you bleeding, in serious pain, with swelling, or with a loose tooth deserves the attention of a dentist as soon as possible. Dental emergencies that always need immediate treatment include:

  • Loose or completely knocked-out teeth
  • Teeth that are bleeding copiously from the gum tissue or a crack, especially if there was an accident
  • Visible lacerations to the gum line
  • Cracked and chipped teeth that are bleeding or painful
  • Abscesses and swollen gums, especially if you have bleeding, fever, or severe pain
  • Severe toothaches, especially if accompanied by a fever
  • Swollen jaws or lips that are interfering with your ability to chew.

Other forms of damage to the teeth may not be as serious, but visiting an emergency dentist still gives you a head start on treatment. Even without a fever, you may want to treat gum abscesses and severe toothaches as emergencies since they make it hard to eat or get any sleep.

First Aid While Getting to Your Appointment

Since many dental emergencies involve trauma or bleeding, you’ll need to handle a little first aid on yourself in preparation for your appointment. Control bleeding by putting clean cotton balls or pads in and around the tooth or gum tissue. Applying ice to swollen and painful areas after an accident won’t hurt anything as you’re traveling to see the dentist. Place any knocked loose or broken teeth in a glass of cold whole milk or water as well. Avoid taking pain medications or other treatments until you see the dentist since they may interact with other medications that you’ll need during dental care.

Avoiding Dental Emergencies

Sometimes it’s completely impossible to prevent a car accident from damaging your teeth. But many everyday activities can threaten your oral health and are easily avoided or mitigated with care. For example. get a custom mouthguard for athletic activities and wear it. A good mouthguard can make the difference between a loose or missing tooth and a healthy smile. For abscesses and infections, brushing three times a day and flossing daily is the key. Good oral hygiene habits can prevent dental emergencies for years. Avoid chewing on ice or other hard objects like pens and pencils. When eating fruit, cut it into pieces if there are hard seeds or pits that could damage the teeth. Taking care while biting and never using your teeth to open packages can prevent a lot of damage.

Kids and Dental Accidents

Some of the biggest dental emergencies involve kids because they love activities that put their teeth at risk. If your child loses a tooth but they’re bleeding or complaining of pain, it’s time to see the emergency dentist. Jaw or tooth pain with swelling and fever also deserves the attention of a dentist when it’s happening to a child or adult. Don’t assume that just because a child’s tooth damage involves their baby teeth that it’s not an emergency. Taking good care of the gums and baby teeth creates the space the child will need for healthy permanent teeth.

Dealing with Dental Emergency Costs

Don’t let the surprise cost of a dental emergency put you off from seeking treatment. Dental insurance tends to cover at least part of the cost of an emergency visit, if not all of it. Financing and credit options also make it easy to handle the cost over a longer period of time. Get the treatment you need first and work out the payment details afterward since some dental emergencies can lead to much more serious health concerns if they go untreated.

Take care of your teeth and don’t let severe pain distract you from your day. Make an appointment with us here at Eight Creeks Dental so we can get to the root of your discomfort. We’ll get you back to good health and recommend long-term solutions to avoid another dental emergency in the future.

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