When it comes to dentistry, emergencies happen. No matter how much care you take for your teeth, they can still become damaged and uncomfortable. Anything from accidentally biting your tongue while chewing on a sandwich to chipping a tooth while eating popcorn can qualify as an emergency.
What Causes Dental Emergencies?
Dental emergencies can be the result of a severe injury to the teeth or gums, or they can be the result of severe tooth pain. Dental emergencies can be the result of sports-related injuries, car accidents, physical altercations, or falls. They can also be the result of chronic conditions like untreated, periodontal disease, tooth decay, or dental abscesses.
In these cases, patients should seek urgent dental care. This is because dental emergencies can be signs of other underlying health conditions, such as heart conditions, diabetes, and infections. Prompt treatment can help patients avoid further complications.
What To Do When A Dental Emergency Occurs?
Emergency dentistry becomes necessary when a tooth is severely damaged, cracked, or knocked out. Below are some of the most common dental emergencies and what you can do to prevent them:
- Toothache: Rinse your mouth with warm water to clean it and alleviate pain. Use dental floss to remove any food particles that may be trapped between your teeth. If the pain persists, contact our office.
- Lost dental crown: a lost dental crown is a dental emergency that can affect the appearance and function of your smile. When a crown is lost, the tooth below the crown is left vulnerable to decay. If you lose a dental crown, the dentist may need to replace the crown with a dental filling, root canal therapy, or a new dental crown.
- Lost dental filling: A lost dental filling is when a restoration (often referred to as a filling) comes out. Fillings usually come out when the tooth structure around the filling becomes weakened and decays enough to loosen the filling. A lost filling is a dental emergency that requires immediate treatment. A lost filling can be uncomfortable, cause pain and lead to infection.
- Fractured tooth: A tooth fracture is when there is a break in the tooth. The fracture can be small, involving only the outer enamel, or involve the dentin and pulp as well. When a tooth fractures, it is important to see your dentist right away. A fractured tooth usually requires treatment right away. Depending on the severity of the tooth fracture, treatment may include dental bonding, dental crowns, root canal, etc.
- Knocked-out permanent tooth: A knocked-out permanent tooth is a dental emergency. You should immediately call a dentist to schedule an appointment. A knocked-out tooth should always be handled carefully. The tooth should be gently rinsed with cold water, making sure to carefully handle the tooth root. Once you have rinsed the tooth, you should place it back in the socket. If the tooth is dirty, you can gently rinse it with water before placing it back in the socket. Once the tooth is back in the socket, you should bite down gently on a piece of gauze or a wet tea bag to help keep the tooth in place.
What Can You Do To Prevent Dental Emergencies?
The best way to avoid an emergency is to practice preventive care and keep your smile healthy. Brush and floss daily, and make regular visits to your dentist.
To learn more about the procedures offered at Short & Vlosich Family Dental, call us at (806) 374-8011 or visit our dental office located at 3503 S Soncy Rd, Amarillo, TX 79119.