WHAT COUNTS AS A DENTAL EMERGENCY?
As soon as you have a dental crisis on your hands, it is a difficult and painful experience, especially if you make the wrong decisions about how to resolve it. If you are lucky enough to have never experienced a dental emergency, you may not know what one is or what to do. In both scenarios, you should prepare yourself to handle a dental emergency when it arises for you or a family member. Our dental practice in Charlotte, NC can help when you or a member of your family end up in one of these dental emergencies:
- A PAIN IN YOUR TOOTH
An ache in your tooth or gums generally does not constitute a dental emergency. However, if you have unbearable pain and you can’t eat, think, drink, sleep, or relieve the ache taking over-the-counter medication because of the constant throb, it is time to go to your nearest dentist in Charlotte, NC. A pain in a tooth is a symptom of many issues, so your dentist will need to determine the underlying cause before discussing your treatment. A toothache may be a sign of something as minor as a cavity, but it may also be caused by something bigger, like gum disease or an abscessed tooth. The only way to find out and stop the pain is to pay a visit to your dentist right away for an exam.
- NEW TEETH
Wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt. This typically happens in the teens or early twenties. While the pain you feel might feel like it’s a crisis, it may not constitute an urgent situation. However, if you have a fever or a swollen jaw, you should call your dentist to be checked as fast as possible to diagnose a possible infection and address pain or other symptoms you may have.
When your child is teething, he or she could also experience swelling, mild fever, and pain. If you are worried your child has a serious issue, like an infection, while they are teething, you should call and get the opinion of your pediatrician to be safe.
- CRACKS, PARTIAL, OR COMPLETE KNOCK-OUT
Regardless of how it happens (a fight or an unfortunate accident), a blow to the face can become a dental emergency. This kind of trauma to your teeth can cause tiny fractures, loose teeth, a chip, or the loss of an entire tooth. If a tooth is knocked out, you will need to quickly get to a dental office or an emergency room for a dentist on call. Remember to take the tooth with you (save it in saliva or milk) so hopefully the dentist can try to repair the tooth.
- SWELLING AND ABSCESSES
An abscessed tooth can happen to anyone at any time, especially if there has been a trauma to the face. An abscessed tooth is an emergency and you need to have an abscess assesed and treated by a dental professional. Causing swelling, pain, inability to chew down, and a high fever, an abscess can quickly take a turn for the worse. If you choose not to get treatment, you can find yourself with bigger issues, like losing the infected tooth, the teeth surrounding it, and eventually, the infection spreading to your jaw and bloodstream. A ruptured abscess can be a significant problem, so find a dentist in Charlotte, NC as soon as possible.
- UNCONTROLLABLE BLEEDING
Small or big, a gash in your the soft tissue of your mouth that will not stop bleeding is definitely a sign that you are having a dental emergency. When you have put gauze in your mouth and applied pressure for at least 15 minutes, but the bleeding continues to persist, then you need to go to your dentist or the emergency room for care. Keep pressure on the area until you get help and do your best not to move your mouth or lips in a way that will restart the bleeding.
- BROKEN RESTORATION
Naturally, a trauma to the head can cause a broken crown or bridge. However, you can find everyday scenarios that can cause your bridge or crown to break, come loose, or fall out. Anyone who has broken a restoration accidentally chewing a popcorn kernel or pulled out a crown eating a gooey food, like toffee, knows it can happen to anyone at any time. In these situations, it is best to save the restoration, and get in to see your dentist soon. When you’re making your appointment, ask for advice on preserving the crown or bridge.
- SPORTS-RELATED INJURIES
When you send your kids to practice or compete in their favorite sport, you make certain they’re equipped for the action with head protection, proper team clothing, and equipment to do their best. Are you protecting your child’s teeth from injury with a mouth guard? Imagine all the opportunities your child has to have a tooth cracked by a baseball, a kick on the soccer field, or a football tackle. Tons of kids have a tooth chipped or knocked out every year from participating in sports. Every sport presents the possibility of having a dental emergency.
Sports-related dental emergencies aren’t confined to children. You could also participate in activities like recreational biking, tennis, basketball, racquetball, and more. Most adults think that an injury won’t happen to them, but even minor damage from a chipped tooth should send you straight to the dentist’s office.
KNOW WHEN TO GET HELP
As you can see, there are many ways you may experience a dental situation that requires emergency care. We want you to bear in mind that if you can’t stop bleeding, you are in unbearable pain, you have lost a tooth or restoration, you have been hit in the face, you feel swelling or a large bump in your gums, then you need to go to a dentist or another medical practice in Charlotte, NC immediately. Whether you are a regular patient of DentalWorks – Carmel Village or not, our team of dental professionals will do our best to help you in a dental emergency and restore your oral health.