When to Call the Dentist: Recognising Dental Emergencies

Suffering from toothache. Beautiful young woman suffering from toothache while standing against grey background

According to a recent survey by the Australian Dental Association, 1 in 5 Australians have experienced a dental emergency at least once in their lifetime. It is important to be aware of the signs and common symptoms of a dental emergency and to seek prompt treatment to reduce the risk of further damage and potential complications.

This article will provide an overview of how to recognise a dental emergency and when to contact a dentist. It will discuss the signs of severe toothache, dislodged teeth, broken dental appliances, swelling of the face, and bleeding gums. With this information, readers will be able to make an informed decision about when to seek professional help in the event of a dental emergency.

What is a Dental Emergency?

A dental emergency is a situation that requires immediate professional attention to prevent further damage to the teeth or gums. It can be an acute or chronic issue involving severe pain, tooth loss, or a dental issue requiring emergency treatment.

Examples include a broken or cracked tooth, a knocked-out tooth, an abscess, or a severe infection. Dental emergencies require prompt dental care; an emergency dentist can provide the necessary treatment.

Root canal treatments are common for dental emergencies. If a tooth is infected, it can spread to the surrounding areas and cause an abscess, an infection that can become life-threatening if not treated promptly. In this case, root canal treatment is necessary to remove the infection and save the tooth.

Toothache and gum infections can also be classified as dental emergencies, as they can cause significant pain and discomfort. These conditions can lead to tooth loss or other serious health problems if left untreated.

In addition to emergency treatments, preventive dental care is important to avoid dental emergencies. Regular brushing and flossing, visits to the dentist, and a good diet can help prevent dental issues and reduce the risk of emergency treatments.

It’s important to recognise the signs of a dental emergency and seek professional help when necessary. If you experience extreme pain, sudden sensitivity, swelling, or other signs of an oral health issue, visit an emergency dentist as soon as possible to prevent further damage. Proper care and attention can protect your teeth and gums from potential damage and ensure your dental health.

Signs of Severe Toothache

A severe toothache can indicate a serious dental issue requiring prompt attention. An emergency dental appointment should be made immediately if accompanied by a cold compress to the face, facial swelling, or uncontrolled bleeding. Other signs to watch include a knocked-out tooth, a broken tooth, or an abscessed tooth.

If a tooth is very sensitive to hot and cold temperatures or extreme pain when biting down, you should contact your dentist for an emergency appointment. Root canals, tooth infections, and warm water rinses can help alleviate pain, but a professional dental examination is necessary to determine the cause and recommend the best course of action.

You should not delay seeking dental care when experiencing any of the above symptoms. Prompt attention and treatment can help avoid further intense pain and discomfort and more serious risks to their dental health. A dentist is best qualified to diagnose and treat any oral health issue, so making an appointment as soon as possible is important.

Dislodged Teeth

When a tooth becomes dislodged, it can be a painful and concerning experience that should not be ignored. A dislodged tooth may have a fractured root, a loose crown, or be completely out of its socket. Dental pain, sharp pains, and soft tissue injuries may be present upon a dislodged tooth and should be examined by a dentist immediately. If left untreated, a bacterial infection can spread to other teeth in the mouth.

Emergency dentistry services should be contacted to assess the situation and provide emergency management. An emergency dentist can assess if the tooth can be saved and, if so, will perform the necessary dental emergency care to save the tooth. Sometimes, the tooth cannot be saved and must be extracted.

Mouth guards should be worn to protect the teeth when engaging in activities that could cause a loose tooth, such as contact sports. This can help reduce the risk of a tooth becoming dislodged, but emergency dentistry services should be sought as soon as possible if an accident does occur.

Dental emergencies such as a dislodged tooth should not be taken lightly, and prompt action should be taken to receive the care needed. This will help reduce the risk of further damage to the tooth, mouth, and other teeth. If a tooth becomes dislodged, seeking emergency dentistry services should be the first action to ensure the best outcome.

Broken Dental Appliances

Accidents involving broken dental appliances can cause significant discomfort and should be addressed immediately. Broken dentures, dental crowns, and other dental restorations require emergency care. For instance:

  1. Healthy teeth can become fractured or chipped due to a broken dental appliance.
  2. Broken dental crowns may cause sharp edges that cause sharp pains when eating or drinking.
  3. Dental injuries may require dental extractions to provide pain relief.
  4. A broken denture may cause an uncomfortable dental situation that requires immediate attention.

No matter the dental emergency, a qualified dentist is the best person to assess the situation and provide additional treatments if needed. Seeking professional help can help reduce the risk of further damage to the teeth and gums and ensure a healthier mouth and smile.

Swelling of the Face

Swelling of the face can be a sign of a serious dental emergency and should be evaluated as soon as possible. It may indicate an underlying oral health issue, such as an abscess or a pocket of pus caused by tooth infections. The abscess may be accompanied by extreme tooth pain and intense pain when applying pressure.

In some cases, drainage can be achieved via dental extraction. However, this should be considered an emergency. It is also important to note that swelling of the face can be caused by fluid in the pericoronal and gingival tissues. Brawny swelling is a localised type and is usually a sign of infection.

If you experience swelling in your face, you should visit your dentist immediately to have the condition evaluated. It is important to seek professional help as soon as possible, as delays in treatment can lead to more serious complications. It is also important to note that swelling of the face is not always a sign of a dental emergency situation and can result from an allergic reaction or other type of infection. However, if you are experiencing any facial swelling, contacting your dentist as soon as possible is recommended to determine the underlying cause.

Bleeding Gums

Bleeding gums can be a sign of a serious dental emergency situation and should be carefully assessed. It is important for individuals to be aware of the symptoms of gum bleeding and to take the necessary steps to restore their oral health.

  • Dental Services: Individuals should contact a dental services provider if bleeding persists for more than 24 hours. Severe bleeding may require urgent dental care.
  • Gum Tissue: Gum tissue comprises connective tissue spaces surrounded by inflammatory swelling. Gingival health is essential for overall oral health.
  • Treatment Plan: If the bleeding is mild, individuals can apply an ice pack to the affected area and monitor the condition of the gums. If the bleeding persists, they should contact a dental services provider and leave a message on the answering machine.

It is important to seek professional help if the gums are bleeding. Dental services providers can develop a treatment plan tailored to the individual’s needs and help restore the gums to optimal health.

Key Takeaways

Emergency dental treatments can be both painful and overwhelming. It is important to recognise the signs of a dental emergency and know when to contact a dentist for help.

For example, if you experience a severe toothache, swelling of the face, broken dental appliances, dislodged teeth, or bleeding gums, you should seek the help of a dentist right away. Prompt attention from a professional can help reduce pain and stop the condition from worsening. The condition can lead to further damage and health concerns without timely dental treatment.

Therefore, it is essential to be aware of the signs of a dental emergency and contact a dentist as soon as possible.

If you or someone you know is experiencing a dental emergency situation, do not hesitate to contact Robelle Dental Centre in Springfield Central, QLD, as soon as possible. Our dentist in Springfield can provide prompt treatment to reduce pain and prevent further damage. Do not wait until the condition worsens, which could lead to other health concerns.