Your doctors at DDS are always on call for you.  Most after hours or weekend emergencies can be dealt with over the phone or wait until regular office hours.  However, some things just can’t wait.  Here is some information on emergencies, how you can deal with them on your own and when a dentist must be involve ASAP.

Infections causing facial swelling:

These simply cannot wait.  Infections that cause swelling of the face can be life threatening.  If swelling occurs under your eye, along your check, or underneath your lower jaw line into the neck, call the emergency number for DDS ASAP.  In most of these cases, antibiotics and treatment are needed immediately.

Tooth Knocked out:

The clock is ticking as soon as this happens.  The tooth needs to be replaced and splinted into place by a dentist ASAP for it to survive.  In many cases the tooth still does not reconnect and other dental restorative options need to be considered.  Also, if the tooth does re-attach, it is very likely it will need a root canal.

What do I do with the tooth in the mean time?

  • It is important the tooth does not dry out.  Gently rinse off the tooth under warm water without touching the root.
  • Put the tooth back into it socket (the space where the tooth came out of) if possible.
  • If it can’t put it in a cup of milk.
  • Get to the dentists ASAP!

If a tooth is not completely knocked out, but is dislodged or loosened, the same applies.  Get to the dentist ASAP.

Crown or filling comes out:

Use the following steps:

  1. If there is no pain and the tooth is not in an esthetic area, it can wait until regular office hours to be put in.
  2. If the tooth is sensitive or is in an esthetic area, over the counter temporary dental cements are available at pharmacies and grocery stores.  A small amount of this material may be used to place the crown back on or to fill the void in the tooth.  This is only a temporary measure, you need to be seen during regular office hours for a permanent solution.
  3. If the tooth is very painful even after temporary cements have been used, call the dentist.
  4. NEVER USE SUPER GLUE.  It is toxic to the nerve, so if you use it you could end up creating the need for a root canal.  Additionally, it ends up ruining crowns, so if the crown was ok and could have been recemented, you will end up needing a new crown.

Broken teeth:

Depending on the severity of the break, different treatments are indicated.  If there is a small chip and the tooth is not sensitive or painful, it can probably wait.  If you are experiencing sensitivity or pain, or notice bleeding from the center of the tooth, call us immediately, as a root canal may be needed.

As always, when in doubt, just ask.  We are happy to help!