Do you need emergency dental care?
If you’re suffering from a damaged tooth or persistant dental pain, please call us immediately on 02 8806 00779.
If you’re experiencing a medical emergency, for example, trauma to the jaw or face, it is recommended that you seek emergency treatment from a doctor or hospital first.
What constitutes a dental emergency?
Any dental problem that requires immediate treatment in order to save a tooth, stop tissue bleeding or alleviate severe pain is considered to be a dental emergency. This also applies to severe tooth infections or an erupted abscess. These are all serious dental emergencies that should be dealt with immediately. With any dental emergency, you should aim to seek professional treatment within 30 minutes or less. This gives you the best chance of a successful recovery.
Common dental emergencies
Here are a few common dental emergencies plus some helpful first aid tips:
Knocked out tooth
Knocking out a tooth can happen in a number of ways, perhaps during a sports game or an accident with friends. Whatever the circumstances it’s crucial that you seek emergency dental treatment as soon as possible. In the meantime you should:
- Locate the tooth but only pick it up by the crown (this is the top part of your tooth)
- Gently rinse it with some saline or saliva to remove any dirt (do not remove any tissue or gum particles)
- Try to place it back in its socket and gently hold it in place
- If it won’t go back in its socket, hold it against the inside of your cheek or in a small cup of saline or saliva
An accident may also cause your tooth to chip or crack. A significant break can cause nerve damage, so make an emergency dental appointment right away. In the meantime you should:
- Rinse your mouth with warm salty water (this is a natural antiseptic)
- If you can feel any rough or sharp edges cover them with dental wax (available at pharmacies)
- If you notice any swelling or feel pain you can apply a cold compress to the outside of your cheek
While a loose tooth is common in children, as an adult it can be cause for concern. It means that the tooth has lost support and is slowly detaching from the gum and bone. If you notice looseness in any of your teeth then contact your dentist immediately. In the meantime you should:
- Avoid eating or chewing on that side of your mouth
- Avoid playing with it or touching it with your tongue
- Avoid any contact sport or activities that could cause an accident
Broken dental filling
If you notice a filling break or fall out you should call your dentist immediately to schedule an appointment. If left untreated, it can cause infection and further damage. Your dentist can explain what treatment options you have available, which will usually involve getting a new filling. In the meantime you should:
- Avoid swallowing the filling, remove it from your mouth if you can find it
- Gently clean your teeth or rinse your mouth with warm salty water
- Use dental wax to cover the area, this protects your tooth while you wait for treatment
- Avoid chewing on the affected side
Severe toothache or sensitivity
If you are experiencing any sort of dental pain or unusual sensitivity you should make an appointment with your dentist. It can be a sign of a more serious issue and the earlier it is detected the better. In the meantime you can:
- Take over the counter pain relief tablets as advised by a doctor or pharmacist (do not use medicines that are applied directly to the gum)
- Hold a cold compress on the outside of your cheek
- Rinse your mouth with warm salty water
Dentures can break either by accident or from general wear and tear. If your dentures break do not try to repair them on your own instead make an appointment with your dentist. Do not continue wearing the damaged dentures, remove them and store them in a safe place until your dental appointment.
FAQs about emergency dentistry
The main thing to do if you experience a dental emergency is to remain calm and call your dentist. To ease your worries we have compiled a list of the most commonly asked questions we get from patients regarding dental emergencies. If you’d like to know more then give us a call. We’re always happy to answer questions about our services over the phone. In the meantime, here are the answers to some frequently asked questions:
What if I don’t have an appointment in your clinic?
Don’t worry, we always try to accommodate our emergency dental patients. Give us a call and explain your dental emergency, if the emergency requires medical treatment you should go to hospital. We can advise you on a course of action over the phone.
Should I call an emergency dentist now or wait?
If you are experiencing a dental emergency it is always best to call your emergency dentist immediately. The longer you wait the lesser your chances of a healthy recovery. Teeth can often be saved if you act quickly.
Should I go to a hospital or an emergency dentist?
Any of the emergencies listed above can be treated by an emergency dentist. If you have experienced trauma to your face or jaw you should go to the hospital. If you think you require medical treatment beyond what a dentist can provide then you should also go to a hospital.
Are you experiencing a dental emergency? Make an appointment with one of our highly trained emergency dentists today.