If you have ever had a dental emergency, you know how dramatically it can impact your life. You also know how upsetting it can be to have a toothache and feel like you can’t get the relief you need.
If you have an emergency, the first thing you need is relief, and you need it yesterday! That is why we arrange our schedule so that there’s always time to tend to the needs of our patients.
There are all sorts of dental emergencies. Some require immediate attention, either to relieve pain or save a tooth. Other problems need attention as soon as possible but aren’t as severe. If you aren’t sure what type of emergency you have, here are some guidelines.
Note: If you have a serious injury that affects your face or jaw or has caused you to lose consciousness, please go to an emergency room or call 911.
You or your child get a tooth knocked out while playing sports – Time is of the essence when a tooth is knocked out because if we see you quickly enough, we have a good chance of saving the tooth. We recommend handling the tooth carefully and avoiding disturbing any connective tissue. Keep the tooth moist by placing it in a cup of milk, water, or even saliva.
You have such a severe toothache you can’t function – Severe tooth pain is a sign that something is very wrong. In some cases, severe tooth pain can indicate a root canal infection. Whatever the cause of the pain, we need to see you as soon as possible to provide relief and save the tooth.
You lose a crown or filling – This is a problem that usually isn’t associated with a lot of pain, but the sooner we see you, the better chance we have of saving the existing crown. We can’t replace a lost filling, but we can create a new restoration so you don’t do further damage to the tooth.
You have mild discomfort in a tooth – Any kind of pain is a problem and needs to be taken care of to avoid making the problem worse. However, you may not need to drop everything to come see us. Call us and we’ll listen to your concerns and then tell you what you can do until we see you.
Please note that these are just general examples, and we certainly don’t want you to spend a lot of time figuring out what type of emergency you have. We know that any emergency is upsetting, so please call us right away so we can help. If you need immediate attention, we will see you the same day. Otherwise, we can give you instructions on how to handle the situation until we can see you.
If your emergency occurs during regular business hours, please call our office to talk to one of our knowledgeable team members. If it is after hours, please call the main number at (423) 239-8021, leave a voicemail, and Dr. Hagan will call you back as quickly as possible.