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What Is Considered A Dental Emergency?

March 27, 2024
What Is Considered A Dental Emergency?

Dental emergencies have no given hours. A serious problem can happen at any time of day, including during nights and weekends.

Finding emergency dental care in the local Springfield, VA, area can be challenging. Springfield Healthy Smiles offers timely care for emergent dental issues causing pain or illness.

What To Do In Case Of A Dental Emergency

When faced with dental trauma or an oral injury, many patients feel lost or confused. This quick guide classifies dental emergencies into three categories according to their severity.

Call or Visit the Hospital Emergency Room:

  • Traumatic dental injuries: Uncontrolled bleeding, oral lacerations, broken facial bones, any severe symptoms of illness or infection

Seek Emergency Dental Care:

  • Severe tooth or gum pain, including pain that comes and goes when biting down
  • Broken or knocked-out tooth
  • Milder symptoms of infection like low fever or chills
  • Pimple-like swelling or pus along the gumline that could indicate a dental abscess
  • Large or painful cracks in teeth need immediate attention because these injuries may expose the pulp chamber
  • Extreme tooth sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures that could indicate the need for an emergency root canal

Call For a Prompt Weekday Appointment:

  • Mild toothache
  • Lost restorations (bridges, crowns, fillings) unless causing significant pain. You can treat mild pain with over-the-counter analgesics.
  • Chipped teeth
  • Food stuck between the teeth

Frequently Asked Questions About Emergency Dentistry

What should I do with a knocked-out tooth? Can the dentist save it?

Primary teeth (baby teeth) are not salvageable when knocked out. If you lose a permanent tooth, the dentist may be able to replant it in the gum.

Find the tooth and hold it only by the crown, rinsing it gently with water. Carefully place the tooth back in the socket as soon as possible, biting down on a roll of clean gauze to stabilize it.

If putting it back in the socket isn't possible, put it in a small container of saliva or milk and bring it to the dentist as soon as possible. The sooner you see the dentist, the better chance your tooth will have. 

The dentist may splint your tooth to its healthy neighbors to encourage the root and jawbone to bond. The healing process could take several months.

Is a cracked tooth an emergency?

A cracked tooth is not typically an emergency unless it is causing severe pain. Broken teeth, however, can be dental emergencies, especially if the pulp becomes exposed. Call us if you have any questions about whether your tooth is broken or cracked.

Call Springfield Healthy Smiles

Not all dental problems can wait for a scheduled appointment. In many cases, time is of the essence when saving teeth.

Local residents can call our Springfield, VA, office at 703-866-7000 for help in a dental emergency. We can assess your problem during and after regular business hours and determine the best way to help you.

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Springfield Healthy Smiles
8338 Traford Lane
Springfield, VA 22152
Tel: 703-866-7000 | Fax: 703-866-7010
Monday | 8am - 5pm
Tuesday | 8am - 5pm
Wednesday | Closed
Thursday | 8am - 5pm
Friday | 8am - 5pm
Saturday | 8am - 2pm
Sunday | Closed

Contact our office today to schedule your appointment!

8338 Traford Lane Springfield, VA 22152
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