How do I get emergency dental treatment?

When you begin to experience pain and discomfort in the head and neck region, contacting your dentist should be the first line of action. However, what happens when you begin to feel pain at odd hours or during the weekend?

If you suddenly feel pain in your mouth late at night, on holidays, or during the weekend, you should be prepared to meet with an emergency dentist in Elgin who will take a look at the problem and address it appropriately.

In most cases, many patients do not know what makes a dental emergency and this may cause a problem for them. The top dentist at Metro Dental has however cleared up the doubts by explaining what a dental emergency is.

What is a dental emergency?

Many people experience dental emergencies far more frequently than they admit to themselves. A current statistic by the American Family Physicians reveals that no less than 22 percent of the patient population suffer dental emergencies over a six-month period.

Although dental emergencies are high, not every dental problem qualifies as a dental emergency. To establish whether you have a dental emergency or not, consider the following;

  • Tooth loss – when dealing with tooth loss, quick attention can save the affected tooth
  • Severe pain – if you are experiencing severe pain or bleeding in the gum, then there is a need to visit the dentist as fast as possible.
  • Dental infections – if you have noticed inflammation or swelling of the gum or you notice knots on the gum which may also lead to swollen face, this is a sign of infection and needs to be addressed as fast as possible. Leaving infections unattended can lead to a bigger dental problem that may lead to teeth loss or even death.
  • Loose teeth – If you notice that your teeth have come loose, even without the associated pain, you need to see a dentist as fast as possible to take a look at the problem and address it head-on.
  • Bleeding – if you notice blood gushing out from unknown areas of your mouth, this is an indication of a dental emergency.

A dental emergency is any oral health issue that requires prompt attention from a dental professional. This can include severe toothaches, broken or knocked out teeth, bleeding or swelling in the gums or face, and any injuries to the mouth or jaw. 

Dental emergencies can be painful and even, in some cases, life-threatening, so it’s crucial to seek immediate treatment if you experience any of these symptoms. It’s also important to note that dental emergencies can happen at any time, so it’s essential to be prepared by knowing what constitutes a dental emergency and having the contact information for your dentist readily available. 

Remember, timely treatment can make all the difference in preventing severe complications and ensuring a healthier smile.

In essence, a dental emergency is considered as any dental problem that requires immediate attention and care. If you are experiencing unbearable pain in the mouth, this is a major indication of a dental emergency and should be attended to as fast as possible.

What looks like a dental emergency but isn’t?

There are certain dental problems that appear similar to dental emergencies and may even be mistaken as one but isn’t. Below are some of the common dental problems that should not be mistaken as a dental emergency.

  • Broken tooth – when you have a broken tooth arising from physical impact or other trauma, rest assured that you do not need an emergency care service. However, if the broken tooth has left sharp fragments in the gum that is traumatizing your mouth, then it may be considered a dental emergency as this has the ability to degenerate into a complex dental problem.
  • Toothache – you can delay toothache treatment if the pain isn’t unbearable. If you feel the pain is something that can wait for some hours or a day before you get to the dentist, then it is recommended that you wait. If you need a good recommendation, you can book an appointment to fix that toothache with the dentist in Holland.
  • Lost crown or filling – if you have lost your dental crown or tooth filling, rest assured that there is no cause for alarm as you can always visit a dentist to get this problem addressed at any time of your choosing.
  • Mouth sores – might seem like a minor issue, but in some cases, they can indicate a dental emergency. Painful, recurring, or slow-healing sores could be a sign of an underlying condition that requires urgent attention from a dental professional. The most common types of mouth sores are canker sores and cold sores, and while they generally go away on their own, they can still cause discomfort and pain that warrant seeking treatment. Additionally, mouth sores can be a symptom of gum disease, oral cancer, or other serious oral health issues.
  • Tooth sensitivity – can indicate an underlying issue that should be addressed by a dentist. Tooth sensitivity can be caused by many things, including tooth decay, gum disease, or even brushing your teeth too hard. It can also be a symptom of a cracked tooth or a loose filling. If you’re experiencing tooth sensitivity, it’s important to make an appointment with your dentist so they can determine the cause and recommend the appropriate treatment.
  • Abscessed gums – require prompt attention from a professional. This occurs when a pocket of pus forms inside the gum, causing pain and swelling. If left untreated, the infection can spread to other parts of the body and lead to more serious health concerns. Symptoms of an abscessed gum include fever, difficulty swallowing, bad taste in the mouth, and a visible bump on the gum. It is important to seek immediate dental care if you suspect you have an abscessed gum, as the dentist will be able to properly diagnose the issue and provide the necessary treatment to prevent further complications.

Handling dental emergencies

There are some common dental emergencies that require urgent care and attention. Below are some of these emergencies and how to address them pending your arrival at the dentists.

Knocked-out tooth

If your tooth has been knocked out due to physical impact or other reasons, do these;

  • Carefully pick up the knocked-out tooth by the crown. It is recommended that you avoid touching the root.
  • Rinse the tooth without scrubbing
  • Re-insert the tooth into the socket or place it in a glass of milk. In the absence of milk, get a pool of your saliva and soak the tooth in it.
  • Get to an emergency dentist as fast as possible.

Dental abscess

If you have a dental abscess, this is an indication of a serious infection. Getting to an emergency dentist on time could make a difference between a full-blown infection across the mouth and a localized infection.

While searching for a dentist, use salt water to rinse your mouth as many times as you can a day.

Mouth sores

types of sores may require different treatments. For example, canker sores typically heal on their own within a week or two, while cold sores may require antiviral medication. You can also use over-the-counter remedies such as topical creams or gels to ease pain and encourage healing. It’s also important to maintain good oral hygiene, especially when you have a mouth sore, to avoid infection or further irritation. If you experience severe pain or notice other symptoms such as a fever or difficulty swallowing, it’s crucial to seek emergency dental care as soon as possible.

Bleeding gums

Gentle rinsing with warm water can help remove any debris or food particles that may be causing the bleeding. Applying pressure with a clean cloth or gauze to the area for 10-15 minutes can help stop the bleeding. It is important to avoid aspirin or ibuprofen as they can make the bleeding worse. If the bleeding continues after trying these home remedies, seek immediate dental attention.