What is Considered a Dental Emergency and What to Do if One Occurs

What is Considered a Dental Emergency and What to Do if One Occurs

July 1, 2023

What Is a Dental Emergency?

It is an oral problem that necessitates urgent care to manage the severity of pain and other symptoms and prevent the spread and advancement of the condition. One of the defining traits of dental emergencies is that they can occur at any time without warning or preparation. Therefore, you would need urgent care to manage the impromptu severe symptoms.

What are Common Causes of Dental Emergencies?

Many factors can accelerate and worsen a typical dental problem into an oral the most common causes of dental emergencies:

  1. Trauma: A blow on the face, a fall, a car accident, or a sports-related injury can cause a dental emergency, like a knocked-out tooth or a broken tooth.
  2. Severe tooth decay: Untreated tooth decay weakens the teeth, making them more susceptible to permanent damage.
  3. Gum disease: Gum infection causes the gums to recede, exposing tooth roots and making them more vulnerable to infection and falling.
  4. Loose or damaged fillings: They expose the tooth to bacteria and lead to infection.
  5. Impacted or infected wisdom teeth: They cause pain and other symptoms that may require emergency dental treatment.
  6. Dental abscess: It is a pocket of pus that forms in the tooth or gum tissue, causing pain, swelling, and other symptoms.
  7. Orthodontic emergencies: Broken braces, popping wires, or other damaged orthodontic appliances require immediate attention by an emergency dentist near you to prevent further damage to the teeth and gums.

What Are Some Common Dental Emergencies?

Based on the description of a dental emergency, many oral problems could be deserving of urgent care. Some Common dental emergencies include:

  1. Severe toothache that is hard to manage with over-the-counter pain medication
  2. Knocked-out tooth – completely knocked out of its socket, often due to trauma or injury.
  3. Chipped, cracked, or broken tooth – can be caused by factors such as biting something hard or sustaining a blow to the face. Fractures in teeth can sometimes be deep enough to cause severe dental pain.
  4. Loose or missing filling – leaving the tooth exposed and vulnerable to decay and infection.
  5. Abscess or infection – causes severe pain, swelling, and difficulty swallowing.
  6. Uncontrolled bleeding from the mouth, gums, or tongue

Are Toothaches Considered Dental Emergencies?

Yes. Toothaches are perhaps the most common type of dental emergency Dr. Quinton Alexander Cobb of Roberts Family Dental – Decatur treats. Pain in your tooth may sound like a small deal until you cannot sleep at night or function during the day.

How Do I Know If What I am Experiencing Is Actually a Dental Emergency?

Sudden and severe oral symptoms are always the factors to make you realize that you need urgent care in a dentist’s office near you. Other signs and symptoms that may indicate a dental emergency:

  1. Severe or persistent pain that radiates to other areas of the face or jaw
  2. Swelling or bleeding in the gums, tongue, or cheeks – may indicate an infection or injury.
  3. Loose or knocked-out tooth – a dentist in Decatur may save the tooth if treated quickly.
  4. Broken or cracked tooth – exposes the sensitive inner tissues of the tooth, leading to infection and pain.
  5. A pocket of pus in the tooth or gum tissue
  6. Difficulty swallowing or breathing
  7. Foul taste or odor in the mouth

What Should I Do if I Have a Dental Emergency?

The severity of your oral problem often dictates the measures you should employ. Some steps you can take if you experience a dental emergency are:

  1. Call your dentist: If you have a regular dentist in Decatur, call them immediately to explain your symptoms and request an emergency appointment. Instead, call a local emergency dental clinic or hospital.
  2. Manage your pain: Over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen are ideal for managing pain until you can visit a dentist near you. Avoid medicine like aspirin, as it can increase bleeding.
  3. Protect your tooth: Locate the lost tooth and avoid touching the root. Instead, rinse it gently with water and place it back in the socket. If not, place it in a container of milk or saliva to keep it moist. Visit your dentist within the hour to heighten the chances of restoring the tooth.

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