Is your Dental Problem an Emergency or Not?

December 23rd, 2023 by dayat Leave a reply »

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Oral hygiene is vital for good health and general well-being. Without proper oral hygiene, people become susceptible to a series of gum diseases, such as gingivitis and periodontitis (gum infections that damage the soft tissue around the teeth). Some issues don’t require urgent medical attention; however, failure to get treatment early on can cause even minor issues to become severe. Sometimes you may sustain an injury that needs immediate attention and, in some cases, an issue can be life-threatening, requiring emergency dental care.

Some oral diseases require urgent medical attention, while others don’t. The American Dental Association (ADA) describes dental emergencies as “life-threatening and requiring immediate treatment to stop ongoing tissue bleeding, alleviate severe pain, or infection.” In this article, you will learn the difference between emergency and non-emergency dental problems.

Emergency Dental Situations
These cover things that require emergency dental care, and some of them include:

Abscess: This is a pocket of pus that can occur in different areas around the tooth. Any signs of abscess warrant an emergency visit to the doctor’s office to drain the pus immediately. The presence of pus is caused by bacterial infection, which can spread to other teeth and different parts of the body if not treated promptly.

Knocked-out Tooth: Sometimes you may sustain injuries to the facial area that lead to tooth loss. When this happens, you need medical attention within 30 minutes of the accident. But before you get to the doctor’s office, you should make sure the knocked-out tooth is kept safe and “alive.” Ideally you should pick it up by the crown, clean it, and put it back in your mouth where it was originally positioned. If this is impossible, wrap it up in clean gauze and submerge it in milk.

Trauma: These are injuries as a result of direct impact on the mouth, which also include injuries to the gums, supporting bone, teeth, and soft tissue on the lips and tongue. They can range from minor to severe. Severe injuries, such as dislodged teeth, cuts in your soft tissue, or teeth jammed into a socket, warrant emergency dental care.

Throbbing Toothache: A throbbing toothache is when it is pulsating and feels like the tooth has a “heartbeat” of its own. It is caused by infected cavities or lost crowns, giving entrance to bacteria. When this happens, contact the emergency dentist immediately to get treatment sooner rather than later.

Non-urgent Dental Problems
These issues, while not debilitating, require a regular appointment with the dentist for treatment. Failure to seek medical attention can increase their severity over time. Non-urgent problems include:

Dull toothache
Lost filling, crown, or bridge
Minor chips or cracks
Food lodged between the teeth.
Non-urgent dental problems are minor and should only require scheduling an ordinary appointment with your dentist for early treatment to prevent them from developing into severe cases. Urgent dental problems, on the other hand, require emergency dental care. Regular visits with a professional, reputable dentist are therefore essential so that, during an emergency, you already have a medical professional you know and trust.

Author Plate
Ellen Smythe is a Practice Manager at Smile Arts of NY, a dental office that provides the best care and advanced modern cosmetic dental procedures, including teeth whitening, porcelain crowns, veneers, Invisalign, dental implants and emergency treatments. If you need emergency dental care, NYC-based Smile Arts can help for that as well. We have been helping New York City residents achieve the look and care they’ve always wanted with their state-of-the-art, affordable dental services since 2010.


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