There are two reasons you might be questioning your need to visit an emergency dentist after a dental emergency occurs. Either you:
- Visibly have damaged teeth
- Are experiencing some level of oral pain
Both are great reasons to start evaluating whether you should run for the emergency dentist office or not. Certainly, you’re concerned about two things: what’s wrong with your teeth/gums? How much is this going to cost?
Let’s dive into a few at-home remedies you can perform leading up to your appointment to preserve any lost teeth, alleviate pain you’re experiencing, and explore payment options. The term “emergency” really escalates things, but it’s not as frightening as you think. Visiting an emergency dentist isn’t an alarming experience. Take a look at your next steps to a healthier smile.
When it’s Time to Visit Immediately
There have been times when calling in the pros has been questionable. If you knock out a tooth, this is not one of those questionable times. This is a time to act quickly and with precision to ensure you receive the best care possible (especially if you’re bleeding and/or in severe pain).
If you’ve lost any pieces of your tooth (or several) put all the pieces in a glass of cold milk until you can be seen by an emergency dentist professional. An article via Daily Mail explains:
‘But if someone isn’t happy to put a tooth back into its socket, they should immediately put it in cow’s milk. Milk – skimmed, semi or full fat – maintains the correct fluid balance in the root, helping it survive longer.’
He adds that water should never be used to preserve a tooth because this causes the cells of the root to swell and die. People should then get to a dentist with the tooth in the milk. If you cannot see a dentist within an hour, go to your local accident and emergency department.
This works for permanent teeth in both adults and children.
If milk is not available, experts recommend putting the tooth in the injured person’s mouth between their cheek and gum until they can see a dentist, as this will help to keep it moist and preserve the root.
‘Anything more than ten to 15 minutes “dry time” is very detrimental to the outcome,’ says Professor Duggal. ‘But if it’s put in milk within five minutes, the root’s cells can be preserved for up to an hour.’
If you’ve lost pieces of a tooth but are not bleeding or in very severe pain, still make an appointment to see an emergency dentist as soon as you can. In most ideal cases, your tooth should be placed back in the socket by a dentist within an hour of being knocked out. Your emergency dentist will also need to examine if there were any fractures above the gum line that could cause any further trouble.
If you’re unsure about the severity of your case, just call an emergency dentist office and we will assist you as soon as possible.
Important, But Not An Emergency
If you’re experiencing mouth pain and can’t identify the direct source and aren’t bleeding, chances are you won’t be treated like an emergency patient. This doesn’t mean your case is any less important. Make an appointment with an emergency dentist and ease the pain at home until your scheduled visit.
- To reduce overall pain: take acetaminophen not ibuprofen or aspirin (this can entice bleeding if you already have some).
- To reduce inflammation: Heat water in the microwave for 30 seconds or on the stove for 5 minutes until warm, add a tablespoon of salt. Once salt has dissolved, gargle, and repeat as needed.
- To clean out problematic bacteria: cut a lemon and/or lime into slices, bite down to release juices and spread over the infected or pained area. (The same practice here also works with ginger or crushed garlic with salt if you avert to citrus foods).
These are some tried and true natural remedies that will temporarily ease your pain until you are seen by a professional. Do not in any case review these practices as solutions to your dental pain. It’s very important you are examined by a trained professional to receive a full diagnosis on your pain.
The Cost to You
The most important question of all, how much am I going to owe ya, doc? 69% of Americans have under $1,000 in their savings account, making many Americans unprepared for emergency costs out of pocket. We understand how incredibly overlooked dental services can be due to cost, which is why we offer such flexible payment options.
At Emergency Dental of Chicago, we want to ensure our patients are receiving the level of care and attention they need, without the fear of an unaffordable bill at the end.
Dr. Roberto Monteagudo is an expert in advanced dentistry, full mouth reconstruction, neuromuscular dentistry and sedation dentistry. He attended the Las Vegas Institute of Advanced Dental Studies from 1999 to 2006 and graduated from Marquette University, School of Dentistry in 1990. Dr. Monteagudo speaks frequently throughout the Wisconsin area on advancements in dentistry and patient education. Dr. Roberto Monteagudo lives in Milwaukee with his lovely wife, Gina, and their seven children whom they make a top priority. He also enjoys outdoor activities and is deeply committed to giving back to his community through charitable events. His warmth and caring combined with his commitment to patient comfort through sedation dentistry, leading edge, gentle, and non-invasive technologies is the reason that his patients travel long distances to see him.