Dental emergencies occur just as any other type of emergency would. In fact, the American Dental Association reports that from 2000-2010, the number of dental emergencies has almost doubled, rising from 1.1 million to 2.1 million.
Dental emergencies are unfortunate, but luckily many dentists offer emergency dental services. Emergency dentistry ensures that you will be seen by an emergency dentist as soon as possible for treatment. The treatment for dental emergencies will vary depending on the type of emergency.
It is important to call your emergency dentist immediately if you believe you are experiencing a dental emergency. Some common dental emergencies include:
Cracked or Chipped Teeth
While teeth are incredibly strong, they can become damaged if they are frequently used to bite down on excessively hard objects. Teeth affected by tooth decay are more likely to become damaged in this way. Chipped and cracked teeth can also be the result of an accident or from playing contact sports. If your tooth becomes chipped or cracked, try to locate and collect any of the fragments. Then, preserve them in a cloth saturated with milk or water until your emergency dentist can see you.
Soft Tissue Damage
A dental emergency can also be an issue that affects the soft tissue structures of the mouth such as the gums, tongue, cheeks, and lips. Usually these types of injuries include lacerations, punctures, and tears. With a soft tissue injury, you will want to clean the area with warm water and then apply pressure to stop any bleeding.
Toothaches that are severe, sudden, and persisting are cause for concern. If you have a toothache, you should first floss to make sure nothing is lodged between your teeth. If something is lodged between your teeth and floss can’t get it, visit your emergency dentist’s office. Do not try to remove it using sharp objects, as this can cause further injury. Another cause of a toothache is a pulp infection. Dental pulp contains nerves and can cause pain when it becomes infected. In any case, you should visit your emergency dentist’s office if the toothache persists.
Loose or Knocked Out Teeth
Teeth can become loose or knocked out for a variety of reasons. In most cases, knocked out teeth are often the result of a traumatic injury or hard impact. Both loose and knocked out teeth require immediate dental attention. A loose tooth should be kept in place by gently biting down. Knocked out teeth should be handled only by the crown to avoiding damaging the tooth root. Any debris should be gently rinsed, however any tissue should be left in place. The tooth should be placed back into its socket and gently bit down on to hold it in place. However, if that is not possible, the tooth should be kept in a glass of milk or water until you can be seen by an emergency dentist.
Lost Dental Restoration
There are cases when dental restorations can become loose or simply fall out. If this happens, you will need to locate and rinse the restoration before visiting your emergency dentist. Be sure to bring the restoration to your emergency dental appointment. In some cases, temporary restorations may come loose. Although they are temporary, it is important that temporary restorations stay in place until the permanent restoration is completed. In these cases, you can use Vaseline, chapstick, or denture adhesive to hold the restoration in place until you can be seen by an emergency dentist.
These are five examples of the most common dental emergencies. Emergency dentists are highly skilled at treating these cases, and will get you an emergency dental appointment as soon as possible. If you believe you are having a dental emergency, it is highly important that you call your Cromwell emergency dentist immediately.
Dr. Roman Fedorciw has been in private practice in Cromwell since 1991. He is a member of the Academy of General Dentistry, American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry and the American Dental Association. He is also a member of the Connecticut Dental Association and Middlesex County Dental Association. Dr. Fedorciw has been acknowledged by his peers as one of the “Top Dentists” in Hartford County by Hartford Magazine and in the state of Connecticut by Connecticut Magazine.