Most people will experience a dental emergency at least once in their lives, which could be the result of many things such as underlying oral health issues or an injury. Today, our dentists in Vancouver share ways you can tell if you are having a dental emergency and what you should do.
What are dental emergencies?
Any problem you have with your mouth, teeth, or, gums that needs immediate treatment by a dentist is a dental emergency. This could include any of the following situations:
Broken, Chipped, or Knocked Out Tooth
A broken or chipped tooth can generally be mended but will need immediate dental care. The dentist will be able to fix the chip or fracture with a filling, whereas more serious breaks might require a root canal or crown.
If you have a tooth that has been knocked out, a dentist might be able to put it back in place within roughly an hour of the incident. Your tooth has a better chance of taking root again during this time frame. If two hours have passed, the odds decrease significantly, and you will have to consider alternative options.
If you have a toothache that can't be managed with over-the-counter pain medication, you will first need to apply ice to the area and call your dentist as quickly as you can because this is considered a dental emergency.
Toothaches can be a sign of potential major dental problems, so it's critical to take them seriously.
A lost filling is also serious because it leaves the interior of your tooth exposed, weakening its structure. It’s imperative to see a dentist quickly so they can replace the filling as soon as possible. You can keep the area safe until you get to the dentist by temporarily replacing the filling with a softened piece of sugarless gum.
Object Lodged Between 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.
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.
This very painful infection is usually found at the root of a tooth and is typically 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.