Dental emergencies are dental issues that require immediate attention to save a tooth, stop bleeding or alleviate serious pain or infection. These situations are usually unforeseen and can happen outside of normal dental office hours. Knowing how to assess and identify a dental emergency can help you avoid serious oral health issues. If there is cause for concern or doubt, contact an emergency dentist immediately.
Common dental emergencies include:
Severe pain and swelling
Bacterial infections are common causes of severe pain and swelling in the mouth. A bacterial infection can result in the painful collection of pus in the tooth or gum, known as an abscess. Other symptoms that may accompany an abscess are swelling of the surrounding areas, such as the gums and jaw, a bad taste in the mouth, difficulty swallowing, and a fever. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you will need to contact an emergency dentist.
Bleeding or swollen gums
Bleeding gums after flossing is an early indication of gingivitis that can lead to periodontal disease. This should be brought to the attention of your dentist at your next appointment but does not require immediate attention. If, however, the bleeding is recurrent and excessive, this is cause for concern, especially if accompanied by swelling. Avoid taking painkillers as this could increase the flow of blood, and contact an emergency dentist immediately.
Cracked or broken tooth
Minor chips and cracks can typically wait until normal dental hours. However, if your tooth fracture is severe or a large piece of a tooth is missing, this can result in nerve damage. Also, a large crack or fracture can expose the sensitive inner pulp of your tooth. This leaves your tooth susceptible to infection if bacteria get into this area of the tooth. Be sure to rinse your mouth with warm salt water to clean the area. If there is pain and swelling, use a cold compress on the face and immediately seek the assistance of an emergency dentist.
If you have experienced an accident that has resulted in an adult tooth being knocked out, quick action can save the tooth. Once the missing tooth has been found, handle it by the crown. Avoid touching the root as this could cause further damage that may affect the probability of reattachment.
The tooth should be rinsed under cold water at a very low pressure to minimize damaging the root. Do not try to scrub the tooth to remove debris. If possible, without causing further damage to the tooth or causing further injury to yourself, reinsert the tooth into the tooth socket. If this is not possible, place the tooth in a container of milk, saliva, or between your cheek and gum, and immediately go to an emergency dentist.
Emergency dental services in Surrey
In moments of crisis, it may be hard to determine if your oral issue requires immediate attention. Contacting a dentist that handles emergencies as soon as possible can help to prevent further risks to your dental health.
When your dental health is at risk, we will do everything we can to ensure you are treated as soon as possible, and we have on-call emergency dental care specialists who are ready to assist you any time, any day.