Emergency Dentist – St. Peters, MO
Treating Toothaches and Broken Teeth Quickly
How to Handle Common Dental Emergencies
Maybe you got hit in the face with a ball and lost a tooth as a result, or maybe you’re suffering from a toothache as a result of poor oral hygiene. Whatever the case, as soon as a dental emergency hits, you should call our office immediately. Here are some first aid tips that can help you while you’re waiting for your appointment.
When you first realize “I have a toothache,” try flossing around the affected area to remove any trapped food particles. If that doesn’t help, there’s a good chance that the pain is being caused by an infection. Until you can get to our office, you can control the discomfort with over-the-counter painkillers. If there’s any swelling, use an ice pack.
Use a piece of gauze to stop any bleeding. Try to save any big pieces of the tooth that you can find. If you need to eat, avoid biting or chewing with the side that has the damaged tooth. Take extra care not to damage the tooth further; if it can’t be repaired, it’ll need to be extracted altogether.
Call your dentist right away; the tooth will need to be replanted within roughly an hour. Only touch the chewing end when picking up the tooth. After rinsing it off, you can try and put the tooth back in its socket. This isn’t always possible, though; sometimes you’ll need to preserve it in a glass of milk or by holding it in your cheeks.
Sometimes, if the crown is still intact, you can use dental cement to temporarily put it back in place until your dentist can perform more permanent repairs. Cover any sharp edges with dental wax so that they don’t cut the soft tissues in your mouth. Avoid using the exposed tooth; it’ll most likely be sensitive or fragile.
How to Prevent Dental Emergencies
- Brush your teeth twice daily. Fluoride-based toothpastes are the most effective at fighting cavities. Soft-bristled toothbrushes are less likely to damage the tooth’s enamel.
- Remember to floss to clean the areas in the mouth that a toothbrush can’t reach.
- Limit your intake of sugary or starchy foods that can lead to cavities.
- Don’t bite down on ice, popcorn kernels, peppermints or other especially hard foods.
- Never open packages with your teeth.
- Wear a mouthguard when playing sports or participating in other kinds of physical activity.
The Cost of Treating Dental Emergencies
Do you need a root canal to get rid of an infection? Does a tooth need to be extracted altogether? Different emergencies require different procedures; we’ll take all the factors into account and give you a reliable estimate for your treatment. We accept a wide variety of dental insurance plans, but we also offer an in-house dental savings plan that covers an exam and necessary X-rays during an emergency visit.
Dental Emergency FAQs
Do you have questions about what you should do in case you experience a dental emergency? When you contact our friendly emergency dentist, we’ll schedule your appointment for as soon as possible and provide you with over-the-phone first-aid guidance. We’ve also answered some of the most common questions that we receive from our patients below for your convenience.
Should I visit the ER?
In stressful moments, it can be hard to determine where you should go to receive help. Although your first thought during a dental emergency may be to visit your local ER, this may prevent you from getting the specialized care you need immediately. While certain life-threatening cases, such as a broken or fractured jawbone or deep facial laceration, require a visit to your emergency room, toothaches and other oral emergencies are best treated by a dentist. Not only will they provide you with timely, pain-relieving treatment, but they will also make sure that the issue doesn’t re-develop down the road. If you’re questioning what facilities you should visit for care, don’t hesitate to contact our office.
What should I do if my dental emergency happens outside of office hours?
Dental emergencies always happen at the least convenient moments, which is why it wouldn’t be surprising that one would occur while our office is closed. If you feel that the damage you’ve sustained is life-threatening or impacting your ability to breathe or swallow, visit your local ER immediately. Otherwise, be sure to contact our office and leave us a message. One of our friendly team members will call you back first thing on our next business day.
How can I bring down facial swelling?
Facial swelling is a common side-effect of several oral problems, including tooth infections and dental trauma. If you’re experiencing this issue, you can bring down any puffiness by placing a cold compress on the outside of the affected area of your face for 10 minutes on, 10 minutes off, for up to an hour. The cooling effect will also help ease any discomfort you may be feeling.
Is it a good thing that my toothache went away on its own?
If you have a severe toothache that suddenly disappears, it may seem like a miracle, but it’s best not to get your hopes up. This is usually a bad sign that your tooth is no longer viable. When oral health problems such as toothaches caused by infections go untreated for long enough, it can attack your tooth so severely that it kills the root. In these cases, instead of being able to preserve it with a root canal, you may need to have it extracted instead. That’s why we recommend scheduling an emergency appointment for as soon as possible if you experience any dental pain or out-of-the-ordinary symptoms.