April 30, 2018
According to the American Dental Association, emergency room visits for dental pain doubled from 1.1 million in 2000 to 2.2 million in 2012. That’s one dental-related ER visit every 15 seconds! Dentists and doctors both agree that good prevention practices can prevent many of these urgent situations.
But as an emergency dentist in Plano, we’re sad to say that even regular dental care and good hygiene can’t prevent them all! So, if you or someone in your family has ever experienced sudden dental pain, keep reading to learn how to handle five of the most common emergencies.
Usually, sharp pains occur when biting down on a piece of food. This can indicate that you have a cavity or fracture, or that you’ve broken a filling or a piece of your tooth.
The first thing you should do is gently rinse out your mouth with water to remove any hard pieces.
Then call us right away and avoid chewing on that side as much as possible until you can be seen. If necessary, use over-the-counter pain medications and a cold compress to reduce any discomfort.
Dull Ache or Throbbing Sensation
A dull or throbbing ache can indicate an infection or abscess. Call us immediately to schedule the first available appointment. If it’s after-hours and you can’t make it to a dentist in Plano, go to the nearest emergency room.
In this situation, it’s important to act fast to prevent the infection from spreading to other areas, which can be very dangerous.
Hot or Cold Sensitivity
If you notice a sharp pain when you consume something hot or cold, you might have a cavity or fracture.
This usually isn’t an emergency unless the pain is severe or doesn’t go away on its own within a few minutes. However, you’ll still want to come in at your earliest convenience so we can assess the situation and recommend appropriate treatment.
Remember, cavities and fractures can get bigger and become more serious if they go untreated!
If you have pain on one side of your mouth when chewing, you might have a fractured tooth. Avoid anything hard or crunchy and try to chew on the other side of your mouth as much as possible.
Call us as soon as possible to schedule a visit.
If you’ve been injured and suspect that your jaw may be broken, go to the nearest emergency room right way. After you’ve been stabilized, call us to schedule an evaluation and possible restorative work.
On the other hand, if you haven’t been injured and simply have jaw tenderness, or notice popping or clicking, call us to schedule an evaluation.
With the right emergency care, taking care of the pain in your mouth doesn’t have to be a pain in the neck!
About the Author
Dr. Christopher Pollard and Dr. Bhavita Patel have both pursued extensive advanced training and can handle a wide variety of dental emergencies. With years of experience providing urgent care and their calming chairside manner, they can put even the most frazzled patient at ease. If you have any questions, they can be reached via their website or at (972) 423-0880.
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