A toothache can be very unpleasant, but does it constitute a dental emergency? In most cases, a toothache that can be handled with over-the-counter medicine doesn't represent an emergency, but a dental issue that wasn't treated in time. But, what if the pain is unexpected and so severe that it keeps you up at night?
Read on to find out what is considered a dental emergency and what you should do if you are facing one.
What Constitutes a Dental Emergency?
Urgent dental procedures are different from dental emergencies. Pain caused by a cavity is an urgent dental issue, but the pain caused by a root canal, for example, can be considered a dental emergency.
To help you better understand what a dental emergency is, here's a list of problems or symptoms that generally require immediate dental care:
- Knocked-out Tooth - If your tooth has fallen out because of a fall or blow to the face, then you need to contact your dentist and schedule an emergency dental appointment. Time is of the essence in this situation and can make the difference between saving the tooth or needing an implant or other form of cosmetic dentistry to cover the gap.
- Bleeding - If you've suffered a blow to the face and are now bleeding uncontrollably, then you must see your dentist right away.
- Severe Tooth Pain - Pain can be quite subjective as we have different tolerance levels to it. But, if you've tried taking OTC medication and your pain is still intense and throbbing, then you should contact your dentist and schedule an emergency dental appointment.
- Tooth Abscess - A tooth abscess is a severe infection that can be life-threatening. If your tooth pain is also accompanied by swelling, then you should immediately contact your dentist.
What Is Not Considered a Dental Emergency?
Any incident or event that involves your teeth can be scary, but not all of them represent an emergency. A chipped tooth, for example, doesn't require immediate care unless some of the tooth fragments got stuck in your mouth or we are talking about a painful fracture. The same goes for a fallen crown or filling.
While you should definitely seek dental care as soon as possible when any of these situations occur, you don't need to look for emergency dentistry.
What to Do in the Case of a Dental Emergency
Don't wait for the symptoms to go away on your own or try to treat yourself at home. Contact your Baltimore dentist right away and tell them what dental emergency you are experiencing. They will tell you what to do next to maximize the chances of a successful outcome. For example, if you've knocked out a tooth, you will need to rinse your mouth with clean water and put the tooth in a milk container. This way, your dentist may be able to save it.
If you are dealing with a dental emergency, you can count on the team at Waterfront Dental to provide expert dental care.
Get in touch with us right now and tell us about your problem.