Dental emergencies can be really painful and scary. A dental emergency refers to any urgent situation that requires immediate dental treatment.
Preventative care is the best way to prevent emergencies that require emergency care. Have your teeth cleaned every six months to eliminate plaque buildup and stop cavities from forming. Brush and floss every day to maintain healthy teeth. If you engage in sports or other activities where your mouth could be injured, wear a custom-made athletic mouthguard to protect your teeth and jaw.
Common dental emergencies include:
Sometimes people experience a broken tooth, which means the tooth has cracked or chipped and is painful. This is usually the result of a sports injury, a fall, or a car accident.
A broken tooth requires immediate care. The dentist will make an appointment with the patient, so they can assess the damage and create a treatment plan to restore the tooth. In the meantime, rinse the mouth out with warm water and apply a cold compress to the outside of the mouth to minimize swelling. Avoid chewing on the affected side until the dentist can repair it.
Once the appointment is made, the dentist will use composite resin or another material to fill the hole where the tooth is missing. If necessary, they will perform a root canal treatment to help save the damaged root. If the nerve tissue is damaged beyond repair, the tooth will need to be extracted.
A tooth can be painful due to decay, a cracked or fractured root, or an abscessed tooth. All of these require prompt attention from our emergency dentist in Winston-Salem as soon as possible. The treatment that you receive will vary based on the type of pain and severity of the symptoms. Our dentist may recommend root canal therapy for a decayed tooth, extraction if you have a severely fractured or infected tooth, or a dental crown for a tooth that is cracked and broken. If you are experiencing pain in your tooth, call our office right away to set up an appointment.
If you’ve lost a filling, you should call your dentist immediately to schedule an appointment to have it replaced. Teeth without fillings are vulnerable to infection and decay. If you have a dental crown that has fallen off, contact your dentist right away for an emergency appointment. In the meantime, avoid chewing on the tooth to avoid irritating the sensitive gum tissue.
A chipped or cracked tooth may require immediate treatment from a dentist. In some cases, the chip can be smoothed and filled in with a dental composite resin material. However, if the tooth is fractured below the gum line, the tooth’s pulp may be exposed, which may result in pain and inflammation that requires root canal therapy to treat.
If a chip is not treated right away, you may develop an infection in the innermost tissue of the tooth called the pulp. This will result in pain and will require additional dental treatments to repair the damage. For this reason, it is important to seek immediate treatment for a broken tooth to prevent any further damage.
If a tooth cracks but does not break all the way through the enamel, you may not need any dental treatments. However, it is still recommended to visit your dentist as soon as possible to determine if you have any other internal damage to your teeth.
If your tooth gets knocked out, you should immediately rinse it with water and try to gently put it back in place while on your way to the dental office. If that doesn’t work, then store the tooth in a container of milk. Call your dentist’s office right away to make an appointment. If it’s after hours, go to an emergency room. Do not try to put the tooth back in if it’s dirty or contaminated.
To find out more about the dental services we offer at Eric J. Sadler, DDS & Associates, Winston-Salem, NC, call (336) 744-1300 or schedule an online consultation. You can also visit the dentist in Winston-Salem, NC, at 3801 Indiana Avenue, Winston-Salem, NC 27105.