If you have a dental emergency or are looking for emergency dental care in the Indianapolis area, Simple Smile Indy employs a highly-rated local dentist and team who can perform a wide range of general services. So whether you’re in need of a general dentist or one who can handle dental emergencies, Dr. Marcus Bigot at Simple Smile Indy has your back. If you’re having dental pain or severe tooth pain, there’s a good chance you may need emergency dental services. First things first — don’t panic. If you need an emergency dentist visit, the good news is urgent dental care doctors are well versed in a wide range of dental concerns. So whether you have tooth decay that’s been left untreated, gum disease, a dental abscess or cracked tooth, the right urgent care dentist can get you fixed up.
Most Common Dental Emergencies
Of course, good hygiene and oral care is the best medicine when it comes to preventing the need for an emergency dental service. But, life (and accidents) sometimes happen. Knowing what to do, and who to call, when a dental emergency strikes can help prevent permanent or long-term damage.
Are you familiar with some of the most frequent dental emergencies and what to do if one of them should happen? Here are a few of the mot common dental health emergencies that most often require professional medical advice:
1. Toothache. While tooth pain is never a good sign, the degree of pain can indicate a variety of conditions, from tooth decay to an infected tooth. Some toothaches are manageable without emergency dental treatment, but if you have severe pain, or other symptoms (such as swelling or discharge) you may require urgent attention.
It’s best to avoid the overuse of aspirin or other painkillers, but it could mask more serious needs, and can cause more issues with the affected gums. Instead, use cold compresses outside of your cheek to help alleviate pain and if it does not improve, you should contact a dental clinic for emergency care. In some cases you may need an emergency tooth extraction.
2. Chipped tooth or cracked teeth. Whether you bit down on something a bit too hard, fell, or had an accident, chipped teeth or fully broken teeth are no joke and are one of the most common reasons for a visit to emergency dentists. If you have a chipped or broken tooth that’s bleeding, make sure to rinse your mouth with warm water and then apply a clean piece of gauze or cotton to help ease any blood flow. Cold compresses can also help with the pain until you can get in to see an emergency dentist.
3. Abscess. A tooth infection or tooth abscess are one of the most common causes of tooth ache, and when left untreated can lead to the need for a root canal and permanent damage to the tooth root. Infections in the mouth, should be treated seriously because they can also spread to other parts of the body. If you’re not sure if you have an abscess, here are a few things to check for:
Swelling or redness
Make sure to call a 24 hour dentist near you, like Simple Smile Indy for emergency treatment. In the meantime, rinse your mouth out with a mild water solution and apply ice to the swollen area to help with pain relief.
4. Lost tooth. If you tooth is completely knocked out or lost, try to recover the tooth, if possible. Pick the tooth up by the enamel and avoid touching or damaging any tissues. Depending on the damage to the tooth, and the type of injury, sometimes it’s possible to temporarily put the tooth back in place until you can see a dental professional.
Ideally, the more quickly you can do this — ideally within the hour — the better your chances you have of saving the tooth. Be careful not to jam the tooth into the socket or do anything too roughly. Make sure to see a dentist immediately. If necessary, you may have to contact an after hours dentist.
If you can’t put the tooth back into the socket, put the tooth in a cup of water or milk with a bit of salt. This can help keep the connective tissues viable for restoration.
5. Missing crown. Sometimes a previously placed dental crown or filling can fall out or break. It’s important not to let this go for too long. If you have a lost filling you’ll want to get in touch with a medical professional so you can get them treated right away and avoid any additional damage or infection!
While waiting for your dentist appointment, you can use sugarless gum as a temporary fix! Carefully place some of the gum into the open cavity. If you have the crown or filling that was broken, bring that to the dentist with you.
5. Broken braces. While traditional braces are built to withstand daily activities such as eating, drinking and talking, sometimes parts of the equipment, such as the wires and brackets can break or twist into uncomfortable positions. This can lead to tooth pain or damage to the surrounding tissues. If this happens to you, make sure to make an appointment with a local emergency dentist so you don’t hinder your alignment progress.
In the interim, trying repositioning the broken wire so that it’s not poking or jabbing your. If that isn’t possible, you can use orthodontic wax to help pad or cover the wire. Do not try to cut the wire yourself.
7. Bleeding. If you’ve recently had a dental procedure done, you may experience a little bit of post-operative bleeding and tenderness. But, if the bleeding does not stop after more than a few hours or seems unusually heavy, it’s a good idea to go back to the emergency dental offices.
Make sure to avoid eating, drinking or putting unnecessary stress on the area until you can see the doctor. You can apply a little bit of pressure with some clean gauze to the extraction or surgery site until you’re able to see the dentist.
How to Prevent A Dental Emergency
The good news is most dental emergencies are preventable! Make sure to brush and use dental floss every day! It’s important to keep up with regular dental care and to see a regular dentist at least once a year. Other things you can do include:
Avoid biting hard objects — If you are a habitual nail biter or tend to chew on hard objects (like ice or pen caps) try to break the habit! Our teeth can withstand a lot of pressure, but some of the most common dental injuries occur from seemingly “innocent” habits.
Follow aftercare instructions — If you’ve recently had dental surgery, dental implants, or have been outfitted with a new dental device (such as braces) make sure to follow your dentists dental care instructions carefully so you avoid having to revisit the emergency room!
Wear proper protective gear — If you play sports, make sure to wear the necessary protective gear such as mouth guards or helmets. These can make all the difference when it comes to avoiding typing in “Emergency dentist near me” into Google Search.
About Simply Smile
Dr. Marcus Bigot, fondly known as Dr. Marcus, leads the Simply Smile team in his hometown of Indianapolis. He attended college and dental school at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where he was a member of the American Student Dental Association and the Special Care Dentistry Association, working closely with people who struggle with mental disabilities and dental phobias.
He then moved back to the Northern Indy area so he could work in the communities he grew up in. The Simply Smile team believes that dentistry is so much more than simply fixing teeth. It’s about building relationships and educating patients on oral health so they can own and advocate for their own health.