How to Deal with Dental Emergencies

by | May 24, 2022

Dealing With Dental Emergencies

 A dental emergency can be frightening due to the distressing thought that it might be difficult to schedule an appointment with your usual dentist that you know and trust. However, at Mouth Dental we offer emergency dental appointments and our team of professionals are well-trained in all emergency situations to tackle any type of dental problem.

What qualifies as a dental emergency?

In most cases of dental emergencies , you may be able to receive urgent treatment sooner than you think. A dental emergency can cover a broad range of complaints, including:

Knocked-out tooth – If your tooth has fallen out due to impact or injury, then an emergency dental appointment could save the tooth if it is bleeding rapidly after tooth loss.

Uncontrolled Bleeding from the mouth – Uncontrolled bleeding from the mouth is considered a dental emergency and you should see your dentist as soon as possible.

Severe dental pain – An emergency dental appointment may be needed to provide the necessary care to relieve your severe dental pain.

Infection – An Abscess in the mouth is considered a serious dental emergency, since it may cause a life-threatening infection. If you are experiencing swelling in or around your mouth or can feel knots in the jaw, you should speak to your dentist immediately.

You should contact a dentist if you are unsure about any of the above symptoms you are experiencing.

What should be done during a dental emergency

Visiting/Calling dentist immediately

If you are experiencing severe dental pain, you should book an appointment with a dentist immediately– however, if this is not possible there are alternative approaches.

If you are unable to contact a dentist and you believe that you require urgent dental treatment, you should visit the Accident and Emergency Department for immediate dental care. Not only can this save your tooth, it may even save you from life-threatening infections or severe blood loss. There are many dental emergency specialists who will be on call, if not, the hospital will organise an appointment for you.

Dealing with pain while you wait

If you are having severe tooth pain

If you are experiencing severe tooth pain, try these pain relief methods while you wait for your dental appointment:

  • Carefully rinse the infected area with warm water
  • Floss properly to ensure that small food particles do not get struck in between the teeth
  • Use warm water to overcome the pain
  • Avoid taking aspirin on the gums as it may burn the tissue
  • If you suffer from extreme facial swelling, visit your emergency dentist immediately
  • If you are finding it difficult to swallow, contact your nearest dentist to schedule an appointment.

It is advised that you keep a list of prescribed medicines to stay prepared during dental emergencies. However, it is always better to consult a dentist immediately to overcome oral complications and maintain good dental health.

When you have a broken tooth

  • Clean the affected area with warm water
  • Keep the tooth protected from high exposure to air, germs or liquid and cover the area with sterilised gauze
  • Apply a cold compress to reduce facial swelling
  • Visit your dental surgeon without delay

Saving a knocked out tooth

  • Locate the tooth immediately. If you cannot find it, look inside your mouth to see that the tooth has not dug into your gums.
  • Tooth should be kept moist. Place it back into the socket without touching its root
  • If you cannot place the tooth back into the socket, put it into the mouth between the cheek and gums. Another option is to keep the tooth in milk
  • Go for dental treatment as early as you can

When you have a cracked tooth

  • Clean the affected area with warm water
  • Use a cold compress on your face to reduce any swelling
  • Consult a good dentist immediately to find a solution to the problem

Abscessed Tooth

An abscessed tooth can be a serious and life-threatening condition and is considered a dental emergency. An abscess is a pocket of pus, which if left untreated, the infection could spread to the jaw and other parts of the body.

Symptoms to look out for:

  • Fever
  • tender lymph nodes in the neck,
  • swelling in the face and a protruding ‘bump’ next to the infected tooth.

If you suspect that you may have an abscess, you should book an emergency dentist appointment immediately.

You should avoid hot drinks and food and use a soft toothbrush. You should avoid flossing the affected area because it will be too sensitive. Before your emergency appointment, carefully clean your mouth with warm salt water to draw the pus to the surface.

An Abscess can be extremely painful and you should avoid painkillers such as numbing gel prior to your emergency appointment.

Tips to Prevent Sports-Related Tooth and Mouth Injuries

  • Mouth guards. The best way to protect your teeth and mouth whilst playing contact sports is by wearing a mouth guard.
  • Face cages. These protect against trauma to the face, especially when playing certain sports like baseball.
  • Helmets. It’s always wise to wear a helmet made for the activity that you are doing. Although most helmets won’t protect the teeth and mouth, they will protect your head against a concussion.

What should I expect from an emergency appointment?

Your dentist will locate and treat the cause of the problem depending on what needs to be done for the type of emergency you are experiencing. If you are experiencing severe dental pain, your dentist will diagnose the cause of it and offer you medication for pain relief. In some cases, it may be necessary to remove a tooth which is causing pain. Your dentist will discuss all possible options with you and will keep you informed of the best and safest option to help you in this emergency situation.

If your tooth has been knocked-out, and if you are able to get an emergency appointment soon, your dentist may be able to re-insert the tooth and hold it in place with a splint by affixing the tooth to the teeth on either side of it. You may need to visit your dentist in a few days to remove the splint.

A tooth that cannot be saved can be replaced with an implant or bridge. Speak to your dentist regarding all possible solutions to achieve the best course of action suited to your needs.

During an emergency appointment for an abscess, your dentist will assess the affected area and attempt to remove the abscess. Depending on the location of the abscess in your mouth there are a number of ways in which it may be removed, including:

Root Canal – A root canal can remove the abscess from the affected tooth before filling and sealing it.

Tooth Extraction – This may be necessary if it is not possible to perform a root canal treatment.

Incision and Drainage – This is where a small incision is made and the abscess is drained. This is often used as a temporary solution and further treatment may be needed.

Your dentist will be able to diagnose the cause of your pain and offer any treatment– including painkillers and antibiotics to prevent infection. If you need any further treatment, then your dentist will book your next appointment. If you need replacement teeth for instance, you will be able to return to have these fitted as soon as these are ready.

Conclusion and mouth dental emergency treatments

At Mouth Dental we are able to offer complete care– including prosthetics. All your crowns and veneers are made at our on-site laboratory, which means that you can replace any missing teeth speedily. Our utmost priority is the safety of our patients; we will take care of every detail and ensure that you are as comfortable as possible!