Any dental problem that requires immediate medical attention is a dental emergency. A dental emergency can be anything from a toothache to a broken or knocked-out tooth.
The most common dental emergency cases we come across include:
A broken tooth is a dental emergency that requires immediate attention. This injury can cause severe pain, tooth loss, and infection that can spread throughout the body if it's not treated quickly. If this happens to you or a family member, it's crucial to call your emergency dentist immediately.
Retrieve the tooth and rinse it carefully with water to remove any dirt or debris. If possible, replace the tooth in the socket and hold it in place with clean but sterile gauze or cloth. If you can't replant the tooth right away, you can store it in a cup of milk or your saliva until you can get to your emergency dental clinic.
Once you get to the dentist's office, your dentist will examine your tooth and take an x-ray to determine the extent of the damage. From there, they will be able to recommend the best treatment for you.
If you chip or fracture a tooth, whether from playing sports or just eating something hard, this is also a dental emergency. Make sure to rinse your mouth with warm water and apply a cold compress to the outside of your face to relieve pain and reduce swelling. Then make an appointment to see your dentist as soon as you can to take care of the injury and ensure that it doesn't become worse.
A knocked-out tooth is a serious dental emergency that requires immediate treatment. If the tooth is found, rinse it gently with water but do not scrub or remove any tissue fragments that may be attached. If possible, the tooth should be placed back into its socket and held in place by a soft cloth or by biting down lightly on the gauze placed over the tooth's root. The patient should then immediately seek dental care from an emergency dentist. Leaving the knocked-out tooth in the mouth increases the risk of permanent damage to the surrounding teeth. In some cases, the dentist can implant the tooth back into the gum if it has been permanently dislodged from the gums.
A severe toothache is a sign that you might have an infection or an abscessed tooth. An abscessed tooth is a bacterial infection that has spread from a tooth's root to the surrounding area. If left untreated, the infection can spread to the jaw and bloodstream, which can result in death. If you suspect that you may have an abscessed tooth, call our office as soon as possible!
Schedule an appointment with your dentist at the first sign of a severe toothache. You will likely need an exam in addition to an X-ray to find out if your tooth is infected. In some cases, antibiotics might be prescribed to help treat the infection.
A lost crown or filling can also be caused by decay that has progressed to the point that they are no longer viable. In this scenario, it is best to see your dentist as soon as possible to prevent more damage from occurring.
Rivermark Dental at Santa Clara is happy to educate and provide exceptional dental treatments to the community. Please schedule an appointment online or call us at 408-988-7788 to have a consultation with our dentist, and we will be happy to assist you further.