Dental problems can happen to anyone, at any time. Some dental problems are minor and can wait until your next dental appointment. But some dental problems are urgent and require immediate attention. Ignoring these symptoms can lead to more serious and costly complications, and even endanger your life. If you’re in Bentleigh, it’s crucial to know that there are skilled dentists in Bentleigh who can provide prompt and effective care during dental emergencies. In this article, we will explain what constitutes a dental emergency, and what you should do if you experience one.
A dental emergency is any dental problem that requires immediate attention. Not all dental problems are emergencies, but some situations are more urgent than others. People are often hesitant to call their dentist when they’re experiencing a dental emergency, wondering if the situation truly warrants emergency dental care and if a treatment will be covered by their insurance plan. If you’re in severe pain, have a fever, or are experiencing swelling or bleeding that cannot be controlled, don’t delay contacting your dentist or visiting the hospital emergency room. Some problems can be life-threatening. Other problems may be less urgent, but avoiding immediate dental care can cause greater problems down the road. Play it safe and get a proper consultation.
The most common signs and symptoms of a dental emergency include:
A toothache can be caused by various factors, such as decay, infection, injury, or a dying nerve. If your toothache is severe, persistent, or accompanied by fever, swelling, or pus, you may have an abscess or a serious infection that can spread to other parts of your body. You should seek emergency dental care as soon as possible to relieve your pain and prevent further damage.
Bleeding or swelling in the mouth can indicate a number of problems, such as gum disease, trauma, or a foreign object stuck in your gums. If your bleeding or swelling is severe or does not stop, you may have a serious infection or injury that can affect your breathing or swallowing. You should seek emergency dental care as soon as possible to stop the bleeding and reduce the swelling.
Broken, loose, or missing teeth or fillings can result from trauma, decay, or wear and tear. If your tooth or filling is broken, loose, or missing, you may experience pain, sensitivity, or difficulty eating or speaking. You may also have sharp edges that can cut your tongue or cheeks. You should seek emergency dental care as soon as possible to repair or replace your tooth or filling and prevent further problems.
Discoloration of a tooth can be a sign of a dying nerve or pulp. This can happen due to trauma, decay, or infection. If your tooth is discolored, you may also experience pain, sensitivity, or swelling. You should seek emergency dental care as soon as possible to save your tooth and prevent infection.
These symptoms can be caused by various factors, such as a cold, an allergy, or a sinus infection. But they can also be signs of a dental problem, such as an abscess, a gum infection, or a tooth infection. If these symptoms persist or worsen, you should seek emergency dental care as soon as possible to diagnose and treat the underlying cause.
What should you do in a dental emergency?
If you are experiencing a dental emergency, the first thing you should do is call your dentist for further instruction. Many dentists have an emergency number you can call if it’s after regular business hours. If you don’t have a dentist, go to an urgent care center or your nearest emergency room for treatment. Here are some tips on how to handle common dental emergencies until you see your dentist:
Rinse your mouth with warm water and use dental floss to remove any lodged food. If your mouth is swollen, apply a cold compress to the outside of your mouth or cheek. Take over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen, naproxen or ibuprofen. (Never put aspirin or any other painkillers against your gums or tooth because it may burn your gum tissue.) See your dentist as soon as possible.
Rinse your mouth with warm water and apply pressure to the bleeding area with a piece of gauze or a tea bag. If the bleeding does not stop after 10 minutes, go to the emergency room. If you have swelling, apply a cold compress to the outside of your mouth or cheek. See your dentist as soon as possible.
Save and rinse any broken pieces of your tooth or filling. Rinse your mouth with warm water. If there’s bleeding, apply a piece of gauze to the area until the bleeding stops. Apply a cold compress to the outside of your mouth, cheek or lip near your broken/chipped tooth or filling to relieve pain and keep any swelling down. If your tooth is knocked out, try to put it back in its socket and hold it in place with a clean cloth or gauze. If you can’t reinsert it, put it in a container of milk or water with a pinch of salt. See your dentist as soon as possible.
Rinse your mouth with warm water and apply a cold compress to the outside of your mouth or cheek. Take over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen, naproxen or ibuprofen. See your dentist as soon as possible.
Rinse your mouth with warm water and salt. Take over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen, naproxen or ibuprofen. See your dentist as soon as possible.
Many dental emergencies can be prevented by taking good care of your teeth and gums, and by visiting your dentist regularly. Here are some tips on how to prevent dental emergencies:
- Brush your teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush. Floss your teeth once a day. Use a mouthwash to rinse your mouth and freshen your breath.
- Visit your dentist at least twice a year for check-ups and professional cleanings. Your dentist can detect and treat any dental problems before they become emergencies.
- Eat a balanced and nutritious diet. Limit your intake of sugary and acidic foods and drinks, such as candy, soda, juice, and wine, as they can erode your enamel and increase your risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Drink plenty of water, and eat foods that are good for your teeth, such as cheese, yogurt, nuts, and crunchy fruits and vegetables.
- Quit smoking and avoid tobacco products. Smoking and tobacco use can harm your teeth and gums, and increase your risk of oral cancer and other health problems. Smoking and tobacco use can also interfere with your blood circulation, immune system, and healing process, making it harder for your gums to recover from infections and injuries.
- Wear a mouthguard or a night guard. If you play sports or grind your teeth at night, you should wear a mouthguard or a night guard to protect your teeth from damage. Your dentist can provide you with a custom-made device that fits your mouth comfortably and securely.
By following these tips, you can prevent dental emergencies and keep your smile healthy and beautiful. Remember, dental emergencies are not only painful and inconvenient, but also potentially dangerous and expensive. So, don’t ignore the signs and symptoms of a dental emergency, and seek immediate dental care if you need it. Your smile will thank you later.