Many of us make a point to visit our dentist twice a year to maintain a healthy mouth full of teeth. However, just like with the rest of our bodies, sometimes things happen and we need to seek emergency care.
We all know the kinds of issues that can be treated in a hospital emergency room. However, when it comes to our teeth, we are less certain what can be treated, when it can be treated and by whom. With that said, what dental problems can an emergency dentist solve? How do you know if a situation calls for urgent dental care rather than a regular dental appointment?
As when you experience pain elsewhere in your body, dental pain can indicate that something isn’t quite right. Minor pain might indicate your toothache is caused by tooth grinding or clenching. It can also be a sign of something more serious, like an exposed root or cavity.
If you are experiencing a toothache, there are a few things you can do at home to prepare for seeing a dentist. Rinse your mouth out with warm water, and use floss to remove food debris. It may be tempting to further investigate the pain by using a tooth utensil or toothpick to poke around the painful area. However, it’s best to resist the urge. Leave the area alone and seek treatment from an emergency dentist.
Broken or Cracked Teeth
From sports injuries to simply a bad bite of food, breaking or cracking a tooth is a common occurrence. However, just because it is common does not mean it should be left untreated. Sometimes, a broken or cracked tooth is only discovered after the fact. Other times, you may be fully aware of it breaking or cracking the moment it happens.
If you know that you just chipped a tooth, try to find the piece that chipped off. Often this isn’t possible (it may be lost or swallowed, for example). However, if you are able to locate the chipped piece, store it in a small container with water or in a wet cloth. There should be just enough water to keep it moist.
Regardless of how you keep it safe, bring the piece of tooth with you when you see the emergency dentist. There is no guarantee they will be able to use it as part of the tooth repair, but it’s worth trying. If nothing else, it will give them a reference for the duration of creating the proper treatment plan.
Oral infections can arise for many reasons, like sharp edges of damaged teeth or braces, and improper placement of dentures and fillings. There is a long list of possible culprits. Some signs of an oral infection include:
- Small white or yellow lesions outlined in red. Look for signs of these lesions in every area of the mouth: your gums, cheeks, the roof of the mouth, back of the throat and even the lip area. These lesions may resemble symptoms of other illnesses, so it’s always best to consult a dentist or doctor to get a proper diagnosis.
- White spots on the tongue or around the mouth
- Severe toothache
- Visible pus at the root of a tooth
- Swelling or inflammation
- Red clusters or a rash around the lips that may spread
- A grey or white area on the tongue and cheek area
While it is extremely important to treat the infection, an equally crucial thing to do is to determine what caused it in the first place. If this step is skipped, there is nothing to prevent another infection from forming. From identifying the root of the problem to treating and preventing another infection, it is advised to contact an emergency dentist at first sight of a problem.
Do Not Wait Too Long to Call
Last but not least, if you’re unsure whether something warrants visiting an emergency dentist, do not wait to consult a professional. Even if you discover that the situation isn’t as urgent as you expected, it’s good to have peace of mind. As they say, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Your Emergency Dentist in North Vancouver
If you or a loved one need urgent dental care, do not hesitate to contact Peak Dental Arts. Whether you are new to the North Vancouver area or simply wish to have the number for emergency dental care on speed dial, our team of experienced professionals is here for you.
Call us today at 604-770-2222 or fill out our online contact form to request an appointment.