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What is Emergency Dental Care?

Accidents happen, but when they involve our smile they can be scary. Our smiles make up a big part of our identity. When an accident or injury involving the teeth or mouth occurs, it is important to act quickly. If you’ve never had a dental emergency in poulsbo before, you may have no idea what your first step should be. What accidents would be considered a dental emergency and which ones would not? These are important questions. Below is more information to guide you in determining what exactly is a dental emergency and how to determine if you need emergency services.

Is Your Oral Injury an Emergency?

If you’ve had an accident and have an oral injury, the very first step is to do a quick assessment and determine if the injury is severe enough to require emergency dental services. In most cases, individuals are scared about their loss of teeth or damage to their smile, and they act too quickly before taking this first step. In a frenzy, they rush to the hospital emergency room (ER), because they are not sure where else to go. BEFORE rushing to the emergency room, it is important to start with a quick assessment and if you are unsure, make a call to your dentist to help you determine if the injury needs immediate treatment. Heading to the ER before making this call may lead to a delay in getting the dental care you need.

Here are some questions to help you determine if your injury is a dental emergency:

  • Is the injury severe? Including losing adult teeth or a wound to the tissue?
  • Is there a serious infection or abscess in your mouth causing pain and soreness?
  • Is there heavy bleeding? This may be due to a recent dental procedure
  • Does the injury include a laceration or wound to the mouth, face or gum?
  • Are there chipped or fractured teeth?

If you answered yes to any of these questions you may need immediate care. If your accident involves a minor crack or chip that doesn’t include a lot of pain or bleeding it can wait to be treated at a normal dental appointment. Many dentists keep slots available to help fit emergencies or immediate treatments in within 48 hours of the accident. If after asking these questions you still do not know, you should just call your dentist, they will help you make an assessment and determine if you need emergency services.

Common Dental Emergencies

Dental emergencies are more common than you think. Playing sports, eating hard foods, or for kids just playing on the playground can result in an accident and the need for emergency dental care. The most common oral accident or dental emergency is a lost, broken, or cracked tooth.

Loss, broken, or cracked teeth: Falls or sports-related injuries can lead to the loss of teeth, a broken tooth, or a cracked tooth. Some broken or cracked teeth need emergency services, and some do not. If you have lost a tooth, or broken or cracked a tooth, the best way to decide if you need to find emergency dental care is to call your dentist’s office. If they are not open, they will likely have an emergency number to call on their voicemail.

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