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

Whether you suffer from an injury or you have a dental issue that has been getting worse over time, it can be tough to know when you might need urgent care. Our Belleville dentists offer advice on how to know when you are experiencing a dental emergency and what some of the most common types are.

What are some of the common types of dental emergencies?

While you may wonder what is a dental emergency and what isn't, the answer is pretty easy. Any dental issue affecting your teeth, mouth or gums is a dental emergency and should be seen as soon as possible. Some of the most commonly treated dental emergencies are:

Knocked Out or Physically Damaged Teeth

If you have a broken or chipped tooth then you should have it repaired as soon as possible to avoid further complications such as infections from occuring. 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.

If it has been less than an hour since you experienced a knocked-out tooth and you were able to locate the tooth then the dentist may be able to place it back in its socket. The tooth has a better chance of taking root again within this time frame. After the two-hour mark, the chances decrease significantly, and alternative measures will have to be considered.

Severe Toothache That Can't Be Relieved

If you have been unable to relieve the pain caused by a toothache then you should apply ice to the affected area and contact your dentist to schedule an appointment. While this may not seem like a big problem, any dental pain that can't be relieved is considered a dental emergency as there may be more serious issues happening below the surface.

Toothaches can indicate potential major dental issues, and so it is important to take them seriously.

Lost Dental Fillings

If you have lost a filling then you should call your dentist soon after to request a visit to replace it. When you lose a filling you are exposing the soft inner pulp of your tooth to bacteria which could lead to infections. It’s important to see a dentist to have the filling replaced as soon as possible. You can protect the area until you get to the dentist by replacing the filling temporarily with a softened piece of sugarless gum.

Object Stuck in Your Teeth

If you have an object stuck in your teeth and have been unable to remove it with floss or toothpicks then you should contact your dnetist to have them remove it. 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.

Bitten Tongue/Lip Resulting in Excessive Bleeding

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 or Infections

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 fever. An abscessed tooth will usually need surgery to drain the infection and treat it properly. Treatment for dental abscesses can involve root canal surgery. 

Do you think that you may be experiencing a dental emergency? Our Belleville dentists will make every effort to see you as soon as possible.

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