What Is A Dental Emergency

A dental emergency is any dental problem that requires immediate attention. When thinking about dental issues you can break them into categories. First and foremost, there are some issues that require immediate attention like damage to a tooth/gums or a lost filling/crown/bridge. There are other issues that might require a dental visit in the near future. While you might not need to go today, you should probably see a dentist sooner than later, for example noticing that a tooth feels loose or something in your mouth feels different. In this article, we will cover different types of dental emergencies and how to handle them. For same-day dental services in Lawrence Massachusetts, please contact our team. 

Dental Emergency vs Medical Emergency

A dental emergency is completely localized to your mouth. Dental emergencies need to be handled by dentists and can include anything from a lost filling to a lost tooth. A medical emergency is any life-threatening issue that requires immediate medical attention. If you or a loved one is experiencing a medical emergency, you should call 911 or get them to an emergency room as soon as possible. For dental emergencies, you should find dentists in your area that provide same day dental treatments and take walk-ins. Another thing to consider is what treatments they provide. For example, if you are having an issue with a dental implant, you will need a dentist that works with implants. Or if you have an issue with a crown or bridge, you should look into dental offices that use CEREC technology because CEREC allows them to make new dental crowns and bridges in-office. 

How Do You Handle A Knocked Out or Broken Tooth

The most common type of dental emergency is when there is sudden damage to a tooth. If a tooth is knocked out or broken, you need to see a dentist right away. Ideally, you should bring the tooth with you. When touching the tooth, make sure to only handle the crown (the part that is usually visible outside the gum). The tooth should be rinsed off with warm water. If possible, a person should try to carry the tooth in their mouth by gently putting it back in the socket or against their cheek. Otherwise, many first aid kits have tooth-saving kits that have a special saline solution to place the tooth in. Do not submerge the tooth in water. If you can get to a dental office quickly it is possible to re-implant the tooth. 

Similarly if you have a tooth that breaks into pieces, you should bring the piece with you. Depending on the break your dentist will either recommend a dental crown or another dental treatment to restore the tooth. If a tooth is simply cracked or chipped, you should see a dentist. If the crack is deep it could lead to a break and you should avoid putting any pressure on the tooth. If the chip is purely cosmetic, it can still be helpful to get an opinion from a trusted dentist. Some chips are truly just cosmetic issues and can be solved with veneers or other cosmetic treatments, but other chips could be problems in the future. 

Is A Toothache an Emergency?

Like many medical issues it depends. There are three things to consider with toothaches: the type of pain, the duration of the pain, and the other symptoms. For example, if you are experiencing severe pain or pain that happens whenever you chew or put pressure on the tooth, that should be looked at. If the pain keeps coming back to the same tooth or teeth, that should also be looked at. Additionally if there are other signs like red and swollen gums, sensitivity to temperature, bleeding, or infection, you should see a dentist right away. Even if your toothache is mild or goes away, it never hurts to make a dental appointment. Most dental issues get worse the longer they aren’t treated. An earlier visit can save your teeth. 

Emergency Dentist in Lawrence MA

Pemberton Dental Associates provides emergency dental services to patients in the Lawrence area. For more information, please contact our office or click below to schedule an appointment. 

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