How to Know if You are Having a Dental Emergency or Not

As much as we try to avoid it, most people will experience some form of dental emergency in their life, what makes a difference is knowing how to handle the situation. Our Dawson Creek dentists shares some advice about how to determine if you are having a dental emergency and what to do if you need immediate care.

What is considered a dental emergency?

If you are experiencing any dental condition that needs immediate care then this would be considered a dental emergency. Specifically, this can include:

Damaged Teeth

If you have a broken, chipped or knocked-out tooth then you should seek dental care as soon as possible. The dentist may be able to repair the fracture or chip with a filling, whereas more serious breaks may need a crown or root canal.

For teeth that have been knocked out, a dentist may be able to put the tooth back in place within approximately an hour of the incident. The tooth has a better chance of taking root again within this time frame. If two or more hours have already passed then tooth replacement will be unlikely and your dentist will recommend alternative treatments.

Intense Toothaches

If you experience a toothache you cannot manage with over-the-counter pain medication, first, apply ice to the area and contact your dentist as soon as possible, as this is considered a dental emergency.

Severe toothaches are a strong indication that there is a more serious issue at hand and so it is important to seek treatment as quickly as possible.

Fillings That Have Fallen Out

A lost filling is also serious as it exposes the interior of your tooth, weakening its structure. It’s important to see a dentist to have the filling replaced as soon as possible. One way that you can help protect your tooth until you get to the dentist is to chew and place a piece of sugarless gum in the space where the filling was.

Object Stuck In Your Teeth

Objects getting lodged between the teeth can present a hazard and warrant urgent attention from your dentist. If you cannot dislodge the object with floss, do not use a sharp object to attempt to remove it yourself as this could push it further between your teeth - or injure your gums.

Excessive Bleeding From Bitten Tongue or Lip

If you are experiencing bleeding that can’t be quelled after biting your tongue or lip, you need to visit an emergency dental clinic. In the meantime, apply a clean cloth to the part of the mouth that’s bleeding and press down. Use an ice pack to reduce swelling, and look for urgent dental care.

Dental Abscess

A dental abscess is a buildup of pus which forms inside the teeth or gums. This very painful condition usually develops from a bacterial infection, often within the soft pulp of the tooth or the root of the tooth. They can be caused by a cavity that’s been left untreated, severe gum disease or perhaps a chipped tooth.

Symptoms can include anything from a bad taste in your mouth to swollen glands, pain, pus or a fever. An abscessed tooth will usually need surgery to drain the infection and treat it properly. If you are experiencing a dental abscess then you may require root canal surgery.

Are you experiencing a dental emergency? Our Dawson Creek dentists will make every effort to see you as soon as possible.

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