Merion Village Dental Blog

When to Call an Emergency Dentist

April 18, 2024


Categories: MVD Patients

As much as we try to avoid them, dental emergencies can happen unexpectedly, leaving us in pain and uncertainty. Whether you’re dealing with a severe toothache, a knocked-out tooth, or a broken brace wire, knowing when to seek emergency dental care can make all the difference in preserving your oral health.

Recognizing Dental Emergencies

Dental emergencies come in various forms, each requiring immediate attention to prevent further complications. One of the most common signs of a dental emergency is a severe toothache that persists despite over-the-counter pain relief measures. This could indicate an underlying issue, such as an infection or a dental abscess, which requires prompt treatment to alleviate pain and prevent the spread of infection.

Another urgent situation is a knocked-out tooth, where time is of the essence in attempting to save the tooth. If a tooth is completely dislodged from its socket, gently rinse it with water and try to reinsert it into the socket if possible. If reinsertion isn’t feasible, place the tooth in milk or saliva and seek emergency dental care immediately.

Broken braces wires, ( lost fillings or crowns, and dental abscesses are also considered dental emergencies that require timely intervention. Broken braces wires can cause discomfort and oral injuries if left unaddressed, while lost fillings or crowns can expose the underlying tooth to decay and damage. Dental abscesses, on the other hand, are serious infections that can lead to swelling, fever, and systemic complications if not treated promptly.

Managing Dental Emergencies

While waiting for professional dental care, there are steps you can take to alleviate pain and minimize further damage. Over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help manage discomfort temporarily, while applying a cold compress to the affected area can reduce swelling and inflammation.

For knocked-out teeth, gently rinse the tooth with water without removing any attached tissue fragments, and attempt to reinsert it into the socket. If reinsertion isn’t possible, place the tooth in a container of milk or saliva to keep it moist until you can see an emergency dentist.

In the case of broken braces wires, try to gently push the wire back into place using a cotton swab or pencil eraser. If the wire is protruding and causing irritation, cover the end with orthodontic wax or a small piece of cotton until you can seek professional assistance.

Differentiating Emergencies from Non-Emergencies

It’s essential to distinguish between standard dental issues and emergencies to ensure timely and appropriate care. While minor toothaches or minor chips in the teeth may not require immediate attention, persistent pain, swelling, or bleeding should prompt you to seek emergency dental care.

If you’re unsure whether your dental issue constitutes an emergency, it’s always better to err on the side of caution and contact our Merion Village Dental team for guidance. We can assess your situation over the phone and advise you on the best course of action.

Seek Prompt, Professional Help

Don’t let dental emergencies derail your oral health and well-being. If you’re experiencing any signs of dental distress, don’t hesitate to contact us immediately for expert care. Our team at Merion Village Dental is here to provide prompt, professional help when you need it most, 6 days a week. Schedule your consultation today and take the first step towards preventing a dental emergency before it comes.

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