Contact us immediately — we’ll make a special effort to see you today. We know you’re in pain, and we want to help. Don’t hesitate. Contact us as soon as possible.
More About Dental Emergencies
Emergencies come in two types:
- Emergencies due to accidents, like knocked-out or dislodged tooth.
- Emergencies due to dental disease, like pain, abscess, lost filling, broken tooth.
Emergencies due to accidents need immediate attention.
Knocked Out Tooth
A dentist needs to try to replace a knocked out tooth within 30 minutes if possible to keep it alive. So find the tooth, rinse it off (don’t rub) in water, replace it in the socket if possible or put it in your mouth next to your cheek. You can place it in a glass of milk if you have some available.
If you think you have a broken jaw, emergency medical treatment is necessary because your breathing may be affected. A broken jaw is usually the result of a vehicle or sports accident or assault. If you experience throbbing or swelling, apply a cold compress. An ice pack applied right after the incident can keep the swelling down. You may need a cup to catch saliva or blood from the injury. Use your hands or a bandage around the top of your head to hold your jaw in place. Call us immediately during office hours or go to the emergency room. If the bone is broken, you will probably see an oral surgeon who will wire your jaw in place.
Emergencies Caused by Dental Disease
Other dental emergencies include losing a filling or crown or having an abscess. Losing a filling, especially a large filling, many include losing part of the tooth. If you lose a crown, you can put some petroleum jelly inside the crown and put it back on the tooth. Don’t sleep with this because you wouldn’t want to swallow your crown.
Call us as soon as you notice the problem. Don’t wait until 4:00 p.m. after all of the other emergencies have called in. We may not be able to see you that day.
Uncontrolled Pain is a Sign of a True Dental Emergency
Throbbing or swelling is a sign of infection. This is when it pays to have an established relationship with a dentist. The dentist may choose to see you after hours. If you aren’t a patient of record, that’s probably not going to happen. In that case, go to the emergency room, and they will try to get you out of pain until you can see a dentist.
If a tooth aches, you can apply a few drops of clove oil. It should be pure oil rather than a tincture containing alcohol. Put the clove oil on a cotton pellet. Use your tweezers to position the pellet in the tooth. Leave the pellet in the tooth. Then call the dentist.
An infected tooth isn’t going to get well on its own. You will probably have at least two appointments, one to assess the problem and give you some medication to clear up the infection and stop the pain. The second appointment would be to restore the tooth. If you just want to call and have the tooth pulled, many dentists won’t do that without taking care of the infection or abscess first. That infected blood is circulating through your entire body. It’s not just a dental issue. Dental issues affect your entire system.
Learn more about dental emergencies – Contact the Salem dentists at Oak Park Family Dental.