Life’s unpredictable. Even the best-laid plans of mice and men can end with a dental crisis, a lot of bleeding and a broken tooth. When an emergency strikes time is of the essence but there are a few things you must consider before calling your emergency dentist.
What Is Considered a Dental Emergency?
The first thing to consider is, am I having a dental emergency? There are many different things that can be dental emergencies, and while some may seem obvious, others are more subtle and might be ignored.
Common dental emergencies include:
- You’re in severe and sustained pain.
- Your mouth is bleeding.
- You have lost a tooth.
- You have a loose or wobbly tooth.
- You’re having difficulty breathing or swallowing.
- You’re showing signs of infection.
An infection might be one of those things that you decide to ignore, but you absolutely mustn’t. A serious infection, such as Ludwig’s Angina or a severe tooth abscess can be life threatening as the infection can travel to the heart. If you have any sores that don’t heal, a bump on your gums, swelling around the cheeks, jaw or mouth, or a fever you may be having a dental emergency.
What Is Not a Dental Emergency
A chipped tooth, lost crown or filling, or a mild toothache aren’t necessarily emergencies, but you should still get them looked at eventually.
A general rule for a dental crisis is: if it’s severe pain, you’re having an emergency and you should see your dentist.
Should I Do Anything Beforehand?
The first thing you should do is remain calm. Most problems can be fixed. Call your dentist and explain the problem. They’ll let you know if it’s a dental emergency and what you should do.
If it’s an overnight dental emergency, call your dentist as they may be able to see you or have a number you can call. Otherwise, you should find an emergency walk-in dentist.
If it’s serious enough you may need to go to the emergency room. Though you’ll still need to visit the dentist at some point.
Depending on the nature of the emergency there’s a few things you consider beforehand.
If a tooth has been knocked out or part has broken off:
- You should rinse the tooth off and keep it in a container of milk or the relevant individual’s saliva. This will keep the tooth safe from bacteria.
- Try to touch the tooth as little and as gently as possible. The tooth is very sensitive and may get damaged if you handle it too roughly.
- Apply a gauze to the gap to help with any bleeding.
If a tooth is broken:
Rinse your mouth out with warm water and treat the swelling.
If your tooth is loose:
- Very, very gently reposition the tooth.
- Gently bite down to prevent the tooth from moving.
If you’re bleeding from the mouth or showing signs of oral infection:
- Get to the dentist as soon as possible.
If you need pain killers, try to avoid aspirin. It’s an anticoagulant (blood thinner) and may cause bleeding issues if you require surgery.
Should I Bring Anything?
Make sure to bring your Medicare card, as you may be eligible for coverage. Otherwise, bring your private health insurance card. The last thing you want after an emergency is to face a big bill.
And if you have broken or lost a tooth, remember to bring the tooth.
How Do I Get an Emergency Dentist Appointment?
In an emergency, it’s important to know you’re in safe hands. At Stanley St. Dental we have the latest in dental technology and the best dentists in Collingwood. Should a dental crisis strike, you can get in contact with us, and our friendly staff will have you smiling again in no time.