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dental emergency

What Classifies as a Dental Emergency?

There is nothing worse than a toothache. While in many cases you can wait until the dentist office opens for business, there are some dental emergencies that you shouldn’t wait to contact your emergency dentist. It’s important that you know what these dental emergencies are so that you can protect your family’s teeth. Whether you are at home or on the road when a dental accident happens, the tips below will help you to know when a dentist is needed and when you can wait until tomorrow.

Knocked-Out Tooth

The first thing you need to remember is in some dental situations you only have about 30 minutes in which to save the tooth. A knocked-out tooth is one of those situations. If you get to the dentist in time and follow the right steps to preserve the tooth, then it’s possible it can be saved. It’s best to pick up the tooth by the top, never the roots, and try to place it back in the socket gently. If the tooth does not stay, then put it in a small cup of milk until you can get to your dentist.

A knocked-out tooth can happen in many situations, such as roughhousing, biting down the wrong way on food, a fall, or many other types of accidents. A chipped tooth can wait until your dentist office opens. However, if the tooth is fractured or cracked, it’s possible that it’s damaged from the inside and you need dental help immediately. Make sure that you wash your mouth out gently and take some Tylenol for the pain until you can get to the dentist.

Tissue Injuries

Any injury to the inside of the mouth, whether it is a puncture wound, tears on your lips, cheeks, gums, or tongue is considered a dental emergency, and you need to contact your dentist right away. If the injury is on your tongue, then it’s important to get to an emergency dental clinic or a hospital for treatment. Remember, to never take aspirin or ibuprofen for the pain because they make the bleeding worse.

Other Emergencies

While these are the most common emergencies, there are a few other dental emergencies to watch out. If your tooth is severely infected or abscessed, it could be fatal and needs to be dealt with as quickly as possible. It’s possible that the dentist can perform a first stage emergency root canal or refer you to a root canal specialist to save the tooth and possibly your life.

Is it a True Dental Emergency?

If you are still wondering what a true dental emergency includes, gauge the severity by the list below.

  • You are bleeding from the mouth
  • The pain is severe
  • Your teeth are loose
  • You have been hit in the mouth or face
  • There are bulges, swelling, or knots on your gums
  • Your mouth or face are swollen

If you are experiencing any of these dental problems, then it’s time to get to your dentist. Some dental problems can wait until the dentist office opens in the morning. These dental issues, however, need to be tended to by an emergency dentist right away.