Our teeth can withstand a lot, but they’re not invincible. Taking good care of your teeth, including brushing, flossing, and visiting a dentist regularly will help to preserve your teeth and gums and keep them strong and healthy. Whether you take good care of your teeth or not, though, dental emergencies can occur at any time. Unfortunately, it’s not always clear as to when a problem qualifies as a dental emergency. If you’re not sure if you need an emergency dentist, read on for signs that you should make an appointment ASAP.
Oral pain is often severe and may indicate a serious dental health issue. You should contact a dentist immediately if you have a toothache since this issue could indicate deep decay or another problem requiring urgent treatment.
Many patients experience tooth pain due to inflammation of the tooth pulp, large cavities, an impacted tooth, or a cracked/damaged tooth. Call an emergency dentist right away for tooth pain if you cannot reach your family dentist. Tooth, mouth, or jaw pain can not only be excruciating but can also indicate an urgent oral health issue.
Obviously, if you knock your tooth out by falling, running into something, or otherwise experiencing trauma, then it’s important to seek dental care right away. Try to avoid handling the tooth by the roots, rinse it off, store it in a cup of saliva or milk (if it cannot be safely be placed back into the socket), and call an emergency dentist immediately.
A chip or crack might be a less obvious dental emergency. Some people can get away with waiting to get a chip fixed until they can get a regular appointment, while those with a large chip or a small tooth crack may need to be seen right away. If you are unsure, call an emergency dentist anyway and get their opinion.
Dental implant failure can typically be prevented with proper oral hygiene and regular dental visits, but not always. Implant failure is rare but is a serious issue. A loose implant or an implant that falls out altogether can indicate infection, failure to integrate, or bone loss.
If you notice that your implant is loose or has fallen out, call an emergency dentist and bring any portion of the implant that has fallen out with you to the office.
Swelling or an Abscess
Facial swelling that does not go away can indicate an infection or an abscess. An abscess is a lump containing pus that is caused by bacteria. They often form when a tooth is infected and needs a root canal or in patients with gum disease.
Even if you can’t find an abscess, pain and swelling can indicate its presence. You might have a fever or a foul taste in your mouth. You might also have trouble opening your mouth. Persistent facial swelling is a clear sign that you need an emergency dentist.
Loose or Missing Tooth
Teeth may become loose or fall out due to advanced, untreated gum disease. If you notice that your tooth is loose, call a dental office right away. If the tooth has fallen out, bring it with you and avoid touching the roots.
Severe Chip or Crack/Broken Tooth
A small chip isn’t something you need to get fixed right away. But if a chip is severe or you think you might make it worse just by chewing, call your dentist.
A cracked or fractured tooth usually indicates internal damage and should not be ignored. Contact an emergency dentist!
Healthy gums typically only bleed when they have been injured. If you are experiencing unexplained bleeding in the gums, then you might have periodontal disease or another oral health issue that should be diagnosed immediately.
Minor bleeding when you brush your teeth isn’t something you need to rush to an emergency dentist for, but it might indicate gingivitis, an early sign of gum disease. You should talk to your dentist about this minor symptom at your next regular appointment.
Find Your Go-To Emergency Dentist
Regardless of whether or not you are currently experiencing a dental emergency, it’s important to have a go-to office you can call if you ever do need immediate help. Minutes can make a big difference in a dental emergency, so the faster you can pull up the right number, the better.
If your regular dental office offers emergency dentistry, great. But if they don’t, it’s important to find a go-to alternative. In Miami, Dr. John Paul Gallardo’s dental practice is known for offering top-notch general, specialized, and emergency dental care.
Dr. Gallardo specializes in periodontics, implant dentistry, and sedation dentistry, and his associates offer everything from cleanings to tooth extractions and restorations. With over 25 years of experience, Dr. Gallardo and his colleagues are well-equipped to handle emergencies of all kinds.
To reach Gallardo Periodontics in Miami, call 305-547-8687. We offer after-hours care for patients experiencing a dental emergency.