Knowing what types of injuries require emergency dental care is critically important to the health of your and your family’s teeth. Accidents can happen any time, and some injuries may require immediate dental care. In some cases, waiting too long after an injury to your mouth or teeth to see a dentist can have severe consequences to the quality of your oral health and even bigger, more expensive dental emergencies later on.
Most common mouth injuries include cracked, broken or knocked out teeth, the result of biting into a piece of food that’s too hard, a sports-related injury or an unfortunate fall. Depending on the severity of the crack in your tooth, it might be necessary to seek out immediate emergency dental care, especially if the tooth is missing a large piece, is knocked out completely or has nerve damage.
But there are a number of other instances where emergency dental care might be necessary. Below, we’ve outlined 7 signs that your teeth might require immediate attention.
Are You Feeling Constant Pain?
Pain is a signal from the body that something is wrong. Similar to chronic pain elsewhere in the body, pain in your gums or teeth is a signal that you should seek out immediate dental care. Common causes include tooth decay, especially through the root of the tooth that’s made its way into your gums. In these cases, your dentist will likely suggest a root canal to remove the decay and alleviate any pain.
Do You Have a Loose Tooth?
Adults should never have to experience loose teeth. If any of your adult teeth are starting to feel loose, a few things could be at play. First, a loose tooth can indicate a tooth injury, which can be incredibly painful for some patients and in many cases requires immediate care. If you’ve been in a car accident or an unfortunate sport-related incident, you should visit a dentist immediately even if the tooth appears to be OK to assess if there’s been any nerve or jaw damage. If you have a loose tooth, it’s always better to be safe than sorry: visit a dentist immediately to assess any potential damage even if you aren’t experiencing any symptoms related to infection or pain.
A loose tooth can also indicate a localized infection. Visiting a dentist immediately to identify the type of infection and necessary treatments is critical to ensuring the tooth heals properly and avoid any other issues related to the infection, which could spread throughout other parts of your body and keep the problem tooth from having to be extracted.
Is One of Your Teeth Cracked?
Fortunately, cracked teeth can be saved if they’re tended to quickly enough. It’s important that you see a dentist as soon as possible to assess any damage and prescribe a solution.
Do You Have a Constant Headache?
While dental issues aren’t the only reason you might be suffering from a constant headache, a tooth injury could be the cause. Your headache could be the result of tooth decay or tooth grinding while you sleep. You may also have an infection from previous dental work that will need to be diagnosed.
If you believe the cause of your headache might be the result of grinding your teeth throughout the night, which is known as bruxism, treatment might be as simple as wearing a mouthguard while you sleep. Speak to your dentist immediately if you’ve noticed that your teeth are showing signs of worn down enamel or sensitivity.
Is Your Jaw Swollen?
A swollen jaw can be caused by an infection or injury to the affected area. If the swollen jaw is coupled with a funny taste in your mouth or breathing difficulties, it’s best to seek out immediate dental care to diagnose the issue as quickly as possible.
Do Your Gums Bleed Regularly and Excessively?
While blood-stained floss isn’t necessary an emergency, regular bleeding from the gums often requires immediate attention and can indicate signs of early gum disease or gingivitis. Excessive and regular bleeding and aches are warning signs there’s an issue with your gums that needs tending to. Catching gum-related issues early is critical to keeping your gums and teeth healthy and intact, especially considering untreated symptoms can reach a point of no return and result in the loss of your teeth.
Does Your Mouth Taste Like Metal?
If so, a previous filling may have cracked or become loose. Seeking immediate care is important if you’ve noticed these symptoms because an open filling can become a cesspool for bacteria and result in new infections or cavities. Don’t leave these to chance: you’ll likely suffer from toothaches, cavities or, in extreme cases, a root canal. Your dentist will prescribe you with a new filling, clearing out any infection or bacteria left behind.
Don’t Wait to Call
Don’t wait until your next scheduled visit to your dentist if any of these issues arise. Doing so can have severe consequences to the overall quality of your oral health and cause more significant issues in the future. If you’re suffering from any of the symptoms outlined above, don’t hesitate to reach out to East River Dental at 289-301-5570.