When to Call the Dentist
If you have a problem with your teeth on the weekend or late at night, you might worry about contacting an after hours dentist. After all, when you’re in pain, it can be hard to tell if the problem is an emergency, and what kind of medical professional you should contact. To help with that, here are some of the most common dental emergencies and what you should do about them.
What is a Dental Emergency?
This may seem obvious. For most people, a dental emergency is when your tooth really hurts and you want it fixed. However, there are a few different types of emergencies that after hours dentists see. Here are some common dental emergencies.
Any problem that threatens the health and placement of a tooth. This broken, lose and cracked teeth.
Bleeding from the mouth tissues that won’t stop.
A severe infection that suddenly flares up. This can be life threatening, so it’s important that you see an after hours dentist as soon as possible if this occurs.
What to do in a Dental Emergency
If you experience a dental emergency, then you need to get help as soon as possible if you want to solve the problem. This will also help you to preserve the health of your mouth and teeth over the long term. With that in mind, here’s what to do for some specific dental situations:
If you experience severe pain after hours, you can take Nurofen to alleviate it until you can get to an after hours dentist. Don’t try to brush the area, but you can rinse with warm water to gently clean it.
If the bleeding isn’t too bad, rinse your mouth with warm water and apply pressure to the area to encourage it to stop. If the bleeding is severe, seek medical help immediately.
If you have a tooth or teeth knocked out because of some type of injury, retrieve the tooth and rinse with water to clean it. Reposition gently in the tooth socket without pressing it down. If you can’t put it back in your mouth, put the tooth in milk to keep it moist. And contact an after hours dentist immediately so the tooth can be put back where it belongs.
It’s easier than you think to crack a tooth or teeth. If you experience this, rinse your mouth with warm water, apply a cold compress to the face and see an after hours dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist will be able to repair the tooth using a porcelain crown or veneer, dental bonding, or a dental bridge.
Something stuck in your tooth.
Unless it’s extremely painful or bleeding, this usually isn’t a dental emergency. Try to gently remove the obstruction with your fingers or tweezers. You can also try flossing around the object. If this doesn’t remove the problem, make an appointment with your dentist.
Severed gum or lips.
This is considered a medical emergency, not a dental emergency. So apply pressure to slow the bleeding and go to your doctor or to the emergency room if it’s after hours.