Although practicing good dental hygiene is the best way to preserve oral health, knowing when to call an emergency dentist in Knoxville can prevent long-term dental damage and help you save a tooth. We’ve rounded up the situations that require immediate attention and how to deal with them.
Common Types of Dental Emergencies and How to Prevent Them
While a terrible toothache can be a surefire sign of tooth decay, it can also indicate several conditions. Sometimes, patients can manage tooth pain without seeing a dental professional. However, a toothache accompanied by swelling, fever, or trouble swallowing necessitates a trip to the emergency dentist.
If you’re dealing with swollen gums and persistent tooth pain that interferes with your daily routine, you should avoid turning to the usual remedies such as taking aspirin and painkillers. Otherwise, these medications can burn the affected gum tissue upon contact. It’s best to apply a cold compress to the part of your face closest to the aching tooth while waiting to receive emergency dental care.
Bleeding and Tooth Pain After Getting a Tooth Pulled
You may experience post-op pain and bleed after tooth extraction. However, if these symptoms persist for more than an hour following the procedure, it’s time to contact your dentist. While waiting, you’ll want to place a thick gauze pad over the extraction site before biting down on the gauze to apply pressure. Moreover, you shouldn’t rinse, eat, drink, suck, spit, and smoke to avoid increasing the level of pain and slowing the healing process.
Chipped or Cracked Tooth
A chipped or cracked tooth may result from biting down on something too hard. Besides ruining your smile, this dental emergency can also cause tooth pain. If you’ve accidentally chipped or fractured a tooth, you’ll want to rinse your mouth with warm water before applying a piece of gauze to the bleeding area. Moreover, you can reduce swelling and relieve pain by using a cold compress outside your cheek close to the affected tooth.
A dental abscess is a serious condition characterized by a painful, swollen spot on your gums that looks like a pimple. Moreover, it’s a sign of infection in the space between the teeth and gums or near the root of a tooth. After making an appointment with an emergency dentist, you’ll want to rinse your mouth with a mild water solution and apply a cold compress to the swollen area.
When you’ve knocked out a tooth, pick it up by the exposed part in the mouth called a crown. If the tooth is dirty, you’ll want to rinse it off without scrubbing it. Otherwise, you might end up removing the tissue fragments attached to it.
If possible, put the tooth back in place within an hour without pushing it into the socket. Doing so will increase your chances of saving your tooth. However, if reinserting the tooth isn’t possible, you might want to place it in a cup of milk or water with a pinch of salt to help preserve the tooth while you wait to see an emergency dentist.
Lost Dental Filling or Crown
Dentists use fillings and crowns to restore the appearance and function of severely decayed or damaged teeth. When these restorations break, you’ll need prompt dental attention to avoid reinfection and further damage.
While waiting for emergency dental care, you’ll want to temporarily address this issue by sticking a piece of sugarless gum into the cavity. If possible, place the filling or crown in a zip-lock bag and bring it to the dentist. Although your dental care provider may decide to reapply the restoration, they may also recommend placing a new crown.