3 Situations Why You Might Need an Emergency Dentist

Emergency Dentist Clearwater, FL

An emergency dentist can provide swift treatment for urgent dental issues, allowing patients to enjoy faster relief from pain and other serious symptoms. If an emergency with your teeth, or a loved one's teeth, arises you will likely be scrambling for help. While you should call 911 if a situation seems life-threatening or if other injuries are involved, keep in mind that there are no dentists in emergency rooms. While ER doctors can stop bleeding and alleviate pain, they will not be able to perform dental procedures or check on the extent of damage that has occurred to the teeth.

An emergency dentist can protect a patient's dental and overall health, making it more likely that long-term tooth issues as a result of an accident or health problem can be avoided. Many dentists offer emergency services in addition to routine services. You should be able to contact a dentist for emergency assistance relatively easily, even if the problem occurs outside of their regular hours. 

When to see an emergency dentist

Mild to moderate aches and pains can usually wait a few days for an appointment with a regular dentist. However, some situations require prompt treatment to help save a tooth or to prevent serious complications.

Extremely loose or knocked-out teeth

When a permanent tooth falls out or is on the verge of doing so, time is of the essence. In some situations, an emergency dentist may be able to save the tooth. However, if a patient waits several hours to be seen, the tissues of the tooth can begin to die and it can no longer be reattached. Also, if the tooth was knocked loose because of trauma, a professional evaluation is recommended.

Many people assume that there is no need to see a dentist if a baby tooth is knocked loose. However, some baby teeth may need to be treated or replaced if they are lost prematurely. Otherwise, children can have problems with speech, digestion, and tooth alignment down the road.

Chipped or cracked teeth

There are many reasons a tooth can become cracked or chipped. One of the most common causes is sudden impact or trauma, but severe decay or chronic tooth grinding can also result in tooth damage. For many people, the embarrassing appearance and pain associated with this type of issue are enough to warrant a visit to the emergency dentist. However, there are other reasons that chips and cracks should be treated right away.

Damage to a tooth that is caused by trauma should be evaluated further. It is possible that the impact caused other problems below the surface that require professional evaluation for a diagnosis. In addition, chips and cracks can expose the inner tissues of the teeth to bacteria. As a result, the affected teeth can easily become decayed or infected at a much faster rate than normal, leading to more complications.

Dental infections

Bacteria, gum disease, and cavities that are left alone to progress can often turn into infections. The most common symptoms of a dental infection include:

  • Severe or throbbing pain
  • Inflammation
  • Unexplained bleeding
  • Oozing or pus around the affected area

An emergency dentist can determine if the tooth or soft tissues are truly infected and will take steps to remedy the situation. The area may be drained and cleaned if needed and antibiotics may be prescribed.

Infections of any type should always be taken seriously. If an infection is left untreated for too long, it makes its way into the bloodstream and can often lead to sepsis. Sepsis requires hospitalization and can quickly become fatal without swift and proper treatment. For these reasons, patients who suspect they have a dental infection should see an emergency dentist right away, especially when experiencing a fever or feelings of malaise.

Conclusion

Lost, damaged, or infected teeth should be evaluated by a professional as soon as possible. An emergency dentist can see patients quickly, helping ensure a better outcome. They can also identify any deeper issues with the teeth that may occur as a result of the emergency situation and advise you on future care. 

You should call 911 for life-threatening emergencies, such as those that involve severe bleeding or lacerations. Visiting the hospital emergency room can provide immediate help with pain or bleeding, but for situations that are urgent (but not life-threatening) and involve the teeth, an emergency dentist can often provide better help. Consider asking your regular dental care provider what their policy on emergency appointments is so that you know who to contact and how to reach them should an emergency occur. 

Request an appointment here: https://www.missourigardensdental.com or call Missouri Gardens Dental at (727) 496-2112 for an appointment in our Clearwater office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Emergency Dentist in Clearwater, FL.

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