Many times, the problems that happen with your mouth, teeth or gums, are not classified as emergencies and usually you can wait a few days to see your dentist. However, it is important to know what is an emergency, so that you can contact your dentist and get the help that you need immediately.
The following issues will require immediate medical attention by a dentist or a hospital’s ER department:
If you get a tooth knocked out, you will need to have an evaluation because the tooth may require re-implantation. In the case that you are able to recover the lost tooth, you should only touch it or hold it by the crown and avoid touching the root. If the affected tooth/teeth become dirty, you should rinse it in tap water and avoid scrubbing. It is important to keep the tooth moist by placing it back in the socket in between your teeth and gums, or a glass of milk.
If you have broken and/or chipped teeth, you should see your dentist immediately. Place any of the chipped or broken pieces in a cool, moist cloth. Your dentist will treat your broken or chipped teeth based on the extent of the damage.
Teeth Knocked Out of Position
If you have teeth knocked out of position, you can try to push them back into the proper position by applying a little bit of pressure. If you are unable to, bite down on the tooth so that it remains in position and then seek immediate medical attention.
Cuts and lacerations in your mouth may be a result of direct trauma to the mouth, such as falling or biting. Any cuts that you notice should be examined immediately in the emergency department of your nearest hospital or by your dentist. You should apply direct pressure to any cuts or lacerations to stop the bleeding.
Non-Traumatic Tooth Problems
If you are experiencing a toothache or tooth pain, you may have a cavity or dental abscess in or around your tooth. You can book an appointment with your dentist, and can take over the counter painkillers, such as Advil, to help relieve pain. However, if pain persists and any of the following occur, you should seek immediate medical attention.
- The gums around the affected tooth swell significantly
- You notice pus and other liquids coming from the affected area
If you notice swelling or redness in your gums, you should visit your dentist so that they can check whether it is caused by gingivitis, dental abscess or infection, or other gum diseases.