Dental emergencies don’t exactly happen often. When they do, having a dedicated dentist you can visit to get it taken care of can make all the difference. Whether you have tooth pain that simply won’t go away or you aren’t even sure if what you’re dealing with is an emergency, don’t be afraid to call us to get guidance and schedule a visit at Westlake Hills Dental Arts. After all, it’s always better to be safe rather than sorry!
The moment you think you’re experiencing a dental emergency, whether it’s an aching tooth, sensitivity that doesn’t go away, or another concern, call our office as soon as you can. Not only can we get you scheduled for an appointment, but our team can provide advice on how to improve and manage your situation before you do arrive. While these tips are not permanent solutions, they can help until you do visit our office.
Take an over-the-counter painkiller like ibuprofen, especially if flossing your tooth does not remove any food debris and reduce your discomfort. Chances are you either have tooth decay or an oral infection, both of which require immediate attention. If a toothache appeared following an injury, apply a cold compress to your cheek to reduce any swelling.
Collect any pieces of the tooth that you can and bring them to our practice. If your face is swelling, apply a cold compress for 10 minutes, then remove for an additional 10 minutes to avoid damaging your skin. While we can sometimes provide an immediate, permanent fix, sometimes we will need to restore your damaged tooth with a temporary crown when you arrive, then create a permanent crown that will be placed at a later date.
Do your best to locate the tooth and pick it up by the crown portion. Do not touch the root or any tissue still attached to the tooth. If there is any dirt or debris on the tooth, gently rinse it and place it back into your open socket for preservation. If not possible, place it in milk or saltwater and get to our office within the hour.
If you still have the crown, you can reattach it to your tooth using temporary over-the-counter dental cement to keep it in place temporarily. You will likely need to have it replaced with a new restoration at our office. Dental fillings generally need to be replaced outright.
While dental emergencies can be difficult to predict, they can still be largely avoided if you take the right precautions. For example, it’s important that you:
In some cases, discomfort can stem from the joints that connect your jaw to your skull, also known as the temporomandibular joint or TMJ. When enough stress has been applied to the jaw, either from chronic teeth grinding and clenching or as a result of an injury, it can lead to discomfort that simply can’t be ignored. We’re happy to evaluate your jaw, then develop a treatment to address your specific issue.
Treating a dental emergency will vary depending on the severity of your issue. For example, damaged teeth may only need a filling. However, more significant damage could require a dental crown, which costs more to design and create. Regardless of the price tag, waiting to get a dental emergency treated will only make your situation worse (and potentially increase your total cost), so it’s best to get seen as soon as possible. We’re happy to create a treatment plan that fits into your budget and stops your dental discomfort.