EMERGENCY DENTISTRY IN MOBILE, AL
EMERGENCY AND URGENT DENTAL SERVICES
If you are in need of urgent dental care, it may be essential to know just what constitutes the need for an emergency dentist. Dental emergencies can happen at any time, usually when you’re least expecting them.
Typically these emergencies occur when the patient has been in an unfortunate accident that may involve a car, athletics, or even from biting something, possible unexpectedly, that may have been too hard for teeth to handle. Whatever the circumstances may be, be sure to stay calm and contact your dental professional for a same day emergency treatment. Certain more severe emergencies may warrant a visit to the ER/urgent care.
If you have a dental emergency, you may want to know the best tips to minimize pain, bleeding, and swelling directly after the accident happens.
West Mobile Dental Care is conveniently located in Mobile, Alabama but proudly services Daphne, Prichard, Montrose, Fairhope, Tillman’s Corner and other neighboring communities.
TIPS TO HELP DEAL WITH A DENTAL EMERGENCY
Check out the list of tips below to help you deal with a dental accident like a pro for yourself or friend.
- Bleeding: One of the first things that may happen after a dental accident is excessive bleeding. When this happens, it can be beneficial to have a first aid kit that has a good amount of sterile gauze that can be used to gently add pressure to the wound to help stop the bleeding. If the bleeding is excessive and doesn’t stop after a substantial amount of pressure has been applied, be sure to visit the emergency room for treatment.
- Swelling: If you’ve been hit in the mouth/face, you may start to notice the area outside of your mouth or jaw will start to swell. The easiest way to take down the swelling on the affected area is by using a cold compress that should be gently pressed against the swollen area. The cold compress will not only aid in de-pressuring the swelling but also numb the area to ease some pain as well. Some swellings are a result of a tooth abscess and not related to soft tissue trauma. A dental abscess will require treatment and antibiotics. Consultation for appropriate treatment for a dental abscess or infection should not be delayed.
- Pain: There are many ways to alleviate pain when it comes to dental emergencies. As mentioned above, a patient can use a cold compress to numb the area to ease the pain. Another way to alleviate pain is by using a topical pain reliever in the form of serum or lotion as well as taking an over-the-counter pain reliever in pill or liquid form. If the pain does not subside following these accessible at home remedies, contact your dental provider as additional treatment may be necessary.
- Lost Permanent Tooth: If an accident happens and one of your teeth gets knocked out, it’s important to stay calm and follow the following tips. If your tooth fell into a clean area, you may attempt to reinsert the tooth into the socket. It is advisable to not touch the root surface so as not to damage cells that help reattach the root to the socket walls. If necessary, gently rinse off the root surface with cold water for 10 seconds prior to reimplanting. If pain or discomfort prevents you from placing the tooth back into the socket, place your tooth in a container of milk and bring it into your dentist office in hopes of reattaching the tooth. Ideally an avulsed tooth is repositioned within the hour.
IS MY DENTAL EMERGENCY IN NEED OF IMMEDIATE TREATMENT?
One of the most common questions a dental office staff receives from patients is if a certain dental “emergency” is in need of immediate treatment. If you have pain that is not going away, if you’ve knocked out a tooth, if you have severe bleeding, or if you have issues that involve the jaw then you may need to go into your dental office for evaluation and treatment.
Once you’ve made it to your dentist’s office, your dental professional will examine your teeth and the trauma the accident has caused. He or she will recommend a few treatment options to address your situation.
One of the first steps your dental professional will follow is to ensure to eliminate any pain you may be experiencing and will provide further treatment if necessary. In an emergency dental service, your dentist may use one of the following procedures as a more common way to treat many of the issues that may arise.
- Medication: In some extreme cases, your dental professional may not be able to perform the needed procedure caused by a dental accident immediately after it happens. However, luckily your dentist can prescribe you medication or antibiotics to help provide temporary relief until the issue is treated. This can help relieve the excruciating pain that may follow an infected tooth or any sort of trauma that may have affected a tooth.
- Extraction: All dental professionals will want to do everything possible to ensure the patient can keep all their natural teeth. However, in some extreme situations, if a tooth is damaged well beyond repair, it must be removed in order to maintain the health of the surrounding teeth and prevent continued infection. Before an extraction is performed, your dentist will be sure to provide you with a local anesthetic that will temporarily numb the surrounding area around the extraction site. If the tooth is severely broken down below the bone, then a surgical extraction may be required, and your dentist may recommend a form of sedation can be used to put the patient to sleep. Once the tooth has been extracted, your dentist will be sure to speak to you about tooth replacement options to close the gap between your teeth.
- Root Canal: When a tooth is abscessed or fractured to the nerve and is still predictably salvageable a root canal may be initiated to help preserve the current tooth and prevent its extraction. Emergency root canals are typically performed to help get the patient out of immediate pain and to start eliminating bacteria feeding the abscess. Often emergency root canals are performed in multiple visits and typically require a crown to protect the damaged tooth structure.
- Bonding: In some dental emergencies, there may be a tooth that is either cracked or chipped but can usually be repaired with dental bonding. The bonding agent is typically used to repair superficial chips in teeth as well as broken fillings in cracked teeth. However, if there's a crack in a tooth approximating the nerve or if the tooth is broken beyond the gum line, they cannot be filled and repaired with the bonding agent. The crack that is below the gum line will likely become infected; therefore in this situation, the tooth must be extracted.