Dental Emergencies: What to Do When You Have an Urgent Issue

We often assume that dental emergencies will never happen to us, but when you face such a situation, do you have everything you need to be prepared? Problems affecting your oral health can significantly impact your overall well-being and comfort. Therefore, knowing who to call and where to get help is crucial in a dental emergency.

Dental emergencies can undoubtedly be distressing and extremely overwhelming. Whether a tooth has just been knocked-out or you are in urgent need of tooth extraction. This is why Sheehan Dental is dedicated to providing emergency dental services for anyone in Palos Park, IL. Our primary goal is to ensure that everyone receives the utmost comfort and care during this stressful and unforeseen dental problem. Do not hesitate to reach out to us immediately should an issue arise.

What Qualifies as a Dental Emergency?

If you ever experience severe facial trauma and have concerns about getting immediate care, it’s crucial to stay calm. You may be wondering what is considered a dental emergency and what can’t wait for an appointment the next day. Fortunately, our comprehensive dental clinic is just a phone call away, ready to assist you during critical situations. Your dental condition may be deemed an emergency if you experience the following:

  1. Intense, unrelenting pain
  2. Bleeding from the mouth
  3. Tooth loss due to injury
  4. Loose teeth that make eating difficult
  5. An ongoing infection

If you require dental treatment to stop bleeding, alleviate severe pain, or prevent you from losing teeth, these situations are classified as dental emergencies. Should you ever be unsure about whether or not your issue is an emergency, don’t hesitate to contact our clinic. Our dedicated dental professionals are readily available to address any questions or concerns that you might have.

What Should You Do When You Have A Dental Emergency?

Dental emergencies are both painful and distressing. Whether you chip a tooth while eating, have a sudden severe toothache, or have a dental injury due to an accident, you need to know how to handle a dental emergency should it unfortunately occur. Here are some things that you should know:

Assess the Situation and Stay Calm

The first and most crucial part of handling any dental emergency is to first stay calm and assess the situation. Try to grasp how severe the issue is to determine whether you need immediate attention or if it can wait until regular office hours. Here are a few of the most common dental emergencies and how to assess them:

  1. Toothache –  Start by rinsing your mouth with warm water to remove any debris. Floss gently to ensure nothing is stuck between your teeth that might be causing the pain. If the pain persists, schedule an appointment with your dentist.
  2. Chipped or Broken Tooth – If you chip or break a tooth, rinse your mouth gently with warm water to clean the area. If there’s bleeding, apply a piece of gauze to the affected area with gentle pressure. Save any broken pieces of the tooth and rinse them, then contact your dentist immediately.
  3. Knocked-Out Tooth – A knocked-out tooth is a time-sensitive emergency. Pick up the knocked-out tooth by the crown (top of the tooth) and avoid touching the root as much as possible. Rinse it gently with water if it is dirty but do not scrub it. Suppose you can try to reinsert the tooth back into the socket, holding it in place with clean gauze. In some cases, that may not work, so if it doesn’t, store the tooth in a container of milk and head to the dentist immediately.
  4. Loose or Displaced Tooth –  If a tooth is loose or out of its normal position, attempt to gently reposition it using very light finger pressure. Do not force it.
  5. Lost Filling or Crown – A lost filling or crown can be extremely uncomfortable as it may expose sensitive tissue. While not usually an immediate emergency, it should be addressed soon to prevent further damage or pain.

Contact Your Dentist

Once you have completely assessed the situation, it is critical that you get in touch with your dentist. Explain the issue to them and follow their expert guidance on the next steps to take. At Sheehan Dental, we have emergency slots available for our patients allowing you to receive prompt attention. We offer reliable emergency services no matter when they arise. If something comes up, make sure that you contact us right away.

Manage Pain and Discomfort

If you are experiencing a dental emergency, there are a few things that you can try to manage pain and discomfort:

  • Over-the-counter pain relievers: Take OTC pain medication following the recommended dosage to alleviate pain. Avoid placing aspirin directly on the tooth or gum, as it can cause irritation.
  • Saltwater rinse: Rinse your mouth gently with warm salt water (about 1/2 teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of water) to reduce inflammation and cleanse the area.
  • Cold compress: Apply a cold compress to the outside of your cheek if you have swelling or pain.
  • Avoid certain foods: Steer clear of hot, cold, or hard foods that can worsen the pain or damage your teeth further.

Preventative Measures

Dental emergencies can be distressing, but you can take steps to minimize the risk of experiencing one in the future:

  • Maintain good oral hygiene: Brush and floss regularly to keep your teeth and gums healthy.
  • Wear a mouthguard: If you participate in sports or grind your teeth at night, consider wearing a mouthguard to protect your teeth from injury.
  • Avoid chewing on hard objects: Don’t use your teeth to open packages or chew on ice or hard candies.
  • Regular dental check-ups: Visit your dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings to catch and address issues before they become emergencies.

Experiencing a Dental Emergency in Palos Park, IL? Contact Sheehan Dental

Dental emergencies are no joke! If you feel as though you need immediate dental attention, do not hesitate to contact us here at Sheehan Dental. We will make sure that you get immediate attention. We are dedicated to ensuring that you don’t have to continue to live in pain until your next scheduled appointment. Time is of the essence; contact us immediately.