Many people have never dealt with a dental emergency before and may not even know what constitutes an emergency. If you are having a dental problem on the weekend or after business hours, when should you call the emergency dental line at your office or reach out to an emergency dentist? Keep reading this article to find out what a dental emergency is, what the most common dental emergencies are and how to prevent dental emergencies in the future.
What is considered a dental emergency?
If you are experiencing dental-related pain, typically, it is classified as a dental emergency. A dental emergency is when the symptoms you have are negatively impacting your life, that is it. So, anytime you have any dental pain, it should be addressed immediately. If you are still unsure, ask yourself the following 5 questions. If you answer yes to any of them, you currently have a dental emergency.
- Do you have a loose tooth?: Having a loose tooth as an adult is a serious problem. If one of your teeth is loose, call the dentist right away. If it is after hours, there is usually a voicemail with an emergency number to call for help.
- Have you lost a tooth?: If you just lost a tooth, this is an emergency. It is possible that this tooth can still be saved if you act quickly.
- Are you in severe pain?: Any time you feel severe dental pain, this is an emergency. Dental problems should not adversely be affecting the rest of your life. Once this happens, you need an emergency appointment right away to find out what is going to fix the problem as soon as possible.
- Are you bleeding from your mouth?: Bleeding in the mouth is a potential problem. You should call your dentist and let them know exactly where you are bleeding, when did it start, how long it has been going on, and any probable causes that you know of.
- Do you have an infection?: Infection is a significant emergency. You will know you have an infection because you will notice a knot in your gums, or your face may be swollen. Dental infections can be life-threatening, so it is essential to call your dental office as soon as you think you have an infection. Tooth infections are also one of the most painful things people can feel; the sooner you reach out to your dentist, the sooner you will feel better.
What are common dental emergencies?
If you are still unsure of what a dental emergency is and whether or not you should call for an appointment, here are the 8 most common reasons for emergency dental visits.
- Toothache: A toothache is one of the most common. You may just need a filling, but if a cavity is far along, you may need a root canal, a crown, or an extraction.
- Chipped or Cracked Tooth: Accidents happen. Sometimes you just bite down too hard on something. Of course, this could also occur from a fall or some other type of accident. This can hurt a lot, so you will want to get this looked at as soon as you can.
- Loose Teeth: If a tooth is loose, you should make an appointment to find out why it is loose and what the dentist can do for you.
- Knocked-Out Teeth: As soon as a tooth is knocked out, you should contact the dentist. Pick up the tooth by the crown and rinse it with warm water, but only if it is dirty. The dentist may be able to reattach it.
- Lost Filling or Crown: If you lose a crown or a filing, that needs to be taken care of right away. You do not want food or bacteria to get into that spot causing worse problems like an infection.
- Broken Braces: Even though braces are made to be tough, they can still have breaks. When they do break, it can be painful in the mouth in general or to chew. This can also slow down the braces fixing the teeth, so this should be fixed as soon as possible.
- Tooth Infection or Abscess: If you think you have an infection, this needs to be treated right away. Tooth infections can spread to other parts of the mouth. They can actually spread throughout the entire body and even become life-threatening.
- Swollen or Bleeding Jaw or Mouth: The final common dental emergency is if you have a swollen jaw, mouth, or bleeding from the mouth. This can indicate an infection or an abscessed tooth, but it could also be some kind of soft tissue damage that affects your dental health.
How do you prevent dental emergencies?
If you want to prevent as many dental emergencies as possible, the best thing to do is have regular checkups, brush, and floss every day. It is also essential to take other precautions to protect your mouth whenever possible. For instance, be careful when chewing hard food items, wear a helmet when riding a bike or participating in other outdoor sports, and wear a seatbelt in the car.
The Dental Group of Simi Valley services individuals in the Simi Valley, CA area. We use the latest technology available to treat our patients. Your satisfaction and comfort are our most important considerations for your care. Contact us to become a patient today.