When to Seek Emergency Dental Care During COVID-19

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When to Seek Emergency Dental Care During COVID-19

While many jobs and events have been put on hold, your health never is. During this time of uncertainty, we want our patients to know that we are available for emergency dental care. We care about you and your family and want to serve in the best way we know how—helping patients who are suffering from a dental emergency.

Dental emergencies can be caused by sports injuries, car accidents, chewing hard foods, or untreated tooth decay and gum disease. During this time, do everything you can to lower your risk of an oral health emergency. This could mean not playing sports like baseball and ultimate frisbee or avoiding chewing things like hard candy, ice, and popcorn.

So, what exactly is an emergency? Read this blog to learn from Dr. Abbey J. Lee about the symptoms of a dental emergency, the most common dental emergencies, and what to do if one occurs.

Dental Emergency Symptoms

Toothaches, bleeding gums, and a minor chip in your tooth aren’t necessarily dental emergencies on their own. However, when these symptoms are combined, you should contact your dentist.

Other signs of a dental emergency include:

  • Severe pain
  • Consistent pain
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Lost tooth
  • Loose teeth
  • Abscess or infection

Any combination of these symptoms may require immediate attention. Call your dentist to learn exactly what you should do.

Most Common Dental Emergencies

Sometimes, a dental emergency can be treated at home. Other times, there are a few simple steps patients need to take before driving to the dentist’s office.

Here are the most common dental emergencies and their protocols:

Avulsed Tooth

An avulsed, or knocked-out, tooth isn’t always a loss. Following these steps increases the chances of saving it!

  1. Hold the tooth by the top, not the root.
  2. Clean the tooth off by rinsing it with water.
  3. Reinsert the tooth into the socket.
  4. If not possible, place it in a cup of milk or water.

Contact your dentist for what to do next.

Fractured Tooth

If your tooth is chipped, save the broken piece by placing it in a glass of milk or water. Your dentist may be able to reattach it with dental bonding.

Sometimes, a chip or crack can invade the tooth’s root and/or pulp. This leads to swelling and severe pain. If this is the case, use a cold compress to reduce the swelling and rinse your mouth with warm saltwater.

If the pain persists, contact your dentist for further instructions.

Infected Tooth

An infected or abscessed tooth can be a serious oral and overall health problem. Seek emergency dental care if you experience dental pain with a combination of any of these symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Tender lymph nodes in the neck
  • Pimple-like bumps on the gums
  • Facial swelling

Call for Emergency Dental Care

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, don’t hesitate to call an emergency dentist. You can rest assured knowing your dentist and dental team are doing everything they can to ensure their office is clean and sanitized for everyone’s safety.

Still not sure if your dental problem is an emergency? Call anyway. We can help you determine what type of care is needed. We can also give your tips on how to care for your mouth at home. To speak with our friendly Grant Park dentist, call 404-328-7177.

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