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What Is Considered a Dental Emergency?

Drawing of a dark-haired man in a teal suit clutching his forehead in panic after a dental emergency

Emergency. It’s a word everyone dreads. You know typical emergencies–a fire, a bad fall, a car crash–but do you know how to identify a dental emergency? Read on to learn about a few of the most common dental emergencies we see.

  1. Knocked-Out Adult Tooth
  2. This is something you hope to never happen: a permanent tooth knocked clean out of your mouth. But if it does happen, you’ll want to get to our office as soon as you possibly can. In the meantime, handle it only by the crown (chewing surface) and gently rinse off any debris with milk or water. Try to put the tooth back into place in the gums and gently hold it there using some gauze. If you can’t do that, keeping the tooth moist will give you the next best chance of saving it. Do so by placing the tooth in milk, or coating it with saliva in your mouth between the teeth and gums. A lost tooth can often be saved if reinserted within the hour of injury.

  3. Cracked or Chipped Tooth
  4. It you crack or chip a tooth, there may not be as much urgency to get to our office, especially with a smaller break, but it’s still important that you schedule an appointment within a day or two. A fractured tooth can allow harmful bacteria into the fragile inner pulp of your tooth that contains important nerves and blood vessels. Gently rinse the area with a cup of warm water mixed with a teaspoon of salt. Brush with an anti-sensitivity toothpaste and apply a temporary dental wax if you have any sensitivity.

  5. Abscess
  6. A dental abscess is caused by an infection and causes pus to form in the teeth or gums. They usually cause severe pain in the affected area, and can eventually lead to the spread of infection, which can quickly become very serious. So if you experience a toothache, you should get it checked out very soon! Untreated decay or infection could be irritating your tooth’s nerve.

Emergency Dental Care at Leesburg Family Dental

If dental disaster strikes, we’re here for you. At our office we offer same-day emergency visits. We leave room in our schedule each day to accommodate last-minute dental woes, such as the ones listed above and more. Call us ASAP at 703-669-8600 for emergency dental treatment!

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