While regular dental visits and proper oral health habits at home can prevent most types of dental problems, it is not always possible to avoid certain mouth-related disruptions. The question becomes, “is this a dental emergency?” If you are questioning whether your dental pain or tooth trauma warrants an urgent trip to the dentist, it is always best to call the office to explain your concern and let the dentist decide. It may be possible to wait a few days or even weeks to see a dental professional. But don’t make this decision on your own. In many situations, waiting too long can lead to worsening pain and more costly treatment.
Here are some common dental emergencies that require a dentist’s attention sooner rather than later:
An avulsed or knocked-out tooth not only demands an emergency appointment, but it also requires special handling instructions if you want to improve your chances of re-implanting the tooth. Never hold the tooth by root. After gently cleaning the tooth, you may either hold it back in its socket or place it in a cup of milk to preserve it until you get to the dentist. There is a small 30-minute window that is allowed before the tooth must be re-implanted.
Loose or misaligned tooth:
A loose tooth or one that has been dislodged out of its proper alignment needs to be corrected promptly. It is not only uncomfortable, but the tooth may come out completely if it is forced in the wrong direction.
Chipped, cracked, or fractured tooth:
Chipped or broken teeth don’t always cause pain. This doesn’t mean you can avoid seeing a dentist altogether, but it may mean you can wait a few days to address it. Leaving a cracked or damaged tooth untreated for too long can invite decay, infection and sensitivity. However, if you have severe damage to a tooth that is causing pain, this is an indication that the inner structure of your tooth is compromised and urgent treatment is necessary.
An abscess is an infection around the tooth’s root, and any type of infection in the body deserves immediate treatment. A dental abscess can be extremely painful and involve swelling, so most patients are very willing go to the dentist in a timely manner.
At Manhattan Dental Design, we are equipped to treat dental emergencies for the entire family. Keep in mind that most dental emergencies can be avoided by scheduling regular checkups, following diligent hygiene habits and wearing a protective mouth guard for sports or teeth grinding. However, we know that unexpected dental problems do occur and we never want your smile to be a source of pain or disruption. Call our office today to learn if your dental problem warrants an emergency visit.
Posted on behalf of Manhattan Dental Design