While dental emergencies are rare, if you are experiencing one, it is important that you do not ignore the problem. Rather, you should act calmly and appropriately to solve the problem as quickly as possible. Today, our oral health experts at the office of Steven C. Hewett D.D.S. in Champions Gate, FL are looking at what you should do if you have a dental emergency and when you should schedule an appointment with an emergency dentist.
What Should You Do If You Have a Dental Emergency?
What you should do in the event of a dental emergency depends on the type of dental emergency you are experiencing. If you have a severe toothache, you should schedule an appointment with an emergency dentist. While waiting for your appointment, you should carefully floss the area in case your pain is caused by food debris that is trapped between your teeth.
If you bite your lip, tongue, or cheek, you should remain calm. Your wound may look very bad, even if it is minor, due to the number of blood vessels in mouth tissues. It is highly advisable that you wash the cut area very gently and do your best to manage your bleeding. This can be done by placing either a towel or moist gauze on the area that is injured and maintaining firm pressure until there is no more bleeding. You can also manage swelling with a cold compress.
What Should I Do in the Event of Tooth Trauma?
What you should do in the event of tooth trauma depends on the nature of the trauma. If your tooth becomes chipped, broken, or cracked, you need to do what you can to prevent an infection. Schedule an appointment with an emergency dentist as soon as possible, and try to find the piece of tooth that broke off if you are missing a piece of your tooth.
If a permanent tooth was knocked out, find the tooth as quickly as possible. If you find it, make sure that you do not touch the root. Rather, pick it up by the crown. You should not scrub or otherwise remove any bits of tissue that may be on the root of the tooth. Additionally, don’t expose the tooth to chemicals or soap or dry it. Rather, you should hold the tooth in place in the socket if possible. If that’s not possible, keep it moist by putting it next to your cheek inside your mouth.
What If I Can’t Put My Tooth in My Mouth?
Even if you can’t put your tooth in your mouth, you need to make sure that it stays moist. However, you should not expose it to tap water. Rather, you should store it in a clean cup and keep it moistened with an emergency tooth preservation solution, milk, or saliva.
It is of the utmost importance that you visit an emergency dentist right away if you lose a permanent tooth. It is ideal to have the tooth put back in your mouth after 30 minutes. It may not be salvageable after an hour.
What Should I Do If My Child’s Tooth Is Knocked Out?
If your child has a baby tooth knocked out, check for bleeding. If bleeding is present, apply pressure to the area gently and schedule an emergency dental appointment. You should not put the baby tooth back in the socket; if you do, the permanent tooth that has not yet erupted may become damaged.
When Should I Schedule an Appointment With an Emergency Dentist?
When You Have Extreme Tooth Pain
If you are experiencing mild tooth pain, it is probably time to schedule a routine dental checkup. Your oral health can be evaluated, and cavities and gum conditions, like gingivitis, can be identified. On the other hand, if you are experiencing constant or extreme tooth pain, it is probably appropriate to schedule an appointment with an emergency dentist.
When You Have a Swollen Jaw
You should not take a swollen jaw lightly. You may have a jaw infection. If you have a jaw infection and you don’t seek immediate treatment, it could move upwards toward your brain. It is also possible that it could traverse your bloodstream or make its way to your lungs. It is much better to play it safe and have your swollen jaw diagnosed as soon as possible.
Numerous conditions can cause jaw swelling. For example, a tooth abscess or tooth decay may lead to swelling. Alternatively, a salivary gland infection can cause such symptoms as swelling and:
- Difficulty swallowing
- Heavy breathing
- Tenderness and redness
- A bad taste in the mouth
What You Need to Understand About Salivary Gland Infections
When your salivary glands are filled with bacteria, an infection can occur. This bacteria blockage prevents your saliva from breaking down food and bacteria completely, worsening the bacterial infection. Whether your jaw is swollen due to a salivary gland infection or some other cause, it should be diagnosed quickly and accurately during an emergency dental appointment.
When You Have a Dental Abscess
Remember, salivary gland infections are only one potential cause of a swollen jaw. A dental abscess is another potential cause. If you have a dental abscess, likely, you will also have pus, a bad taste in your mouth, swollen glands, and a fever. Also, the pain associated with a swollen jaw is usually severe.
Abscesses are not a condition to be taken lightly. If you believe you have an abscess, schedule an appointment with a dentist right away. Tooth abscesses are most commonly brought about by cavities that have traveled downward and started to discharge. Also, tooth abscesses may be brought about by a tooth injury or gum disease that has not been treated. Tooth injuries cause abscesses because they let bacteria into the sensitive dental pulp of your teeth.
When You Have a Loose Tooth
It is normal for a child between the age of six and 12. However, if you experience loose teeth as an adult, you need to schedule an emergency appointment with a dentist. Loose teeth are not a good sign in adults and need immediate professional attention. We can diagnose the cause of your loose teeth when you come in for an appointment. Infections and injuries are the most common causes of loose teeth in adults, but there are also other causes that require attention.
Tooth injuries from any type of trauma can cause loose teeth. However, the most common causes are motor vehicle accidents and sports injuries. If you’ve been in a motor vehicle accident recently or taken a blow to the face, you should strongly consider scheduling a dental appointment to verify that your teeth were not injured.
Schedule Your Emergency Dental Appointment Now
Generally, in the event of a dental emergency, you should remain calm and schedule an appointment with an emergency dentist as soon as possible. Beyond that, the best steps for you to take depend on the nature of the dental emergency you are experiencing. Contact us right away at the office of Steven C. Hewett, D.D.S. in Champions Gate, FL to schedule an emergency dental appointment if you suspect you are experiencing a dental emergency.