Dental emergencies are unfortunate experiences. Dr. Miller works to see patients promptly and proficiently, providing care and comfort in these situations. Dental emergencies can be one of several types: trauma to teeth, pain from infected teeth, or fracture of denture or partial denture.
Trauma to teeth and pain from trauma:
Trauma to teeth can occur at all ages. Many active adults and children have sadly experienced trauma to teeth from sports or work place accidents. If an individual has had a tooth knocked out (i.e. avulsed), it is important that the tooth be immediately placed in either milk or Hank’s solution. The tooth should not be rinsed with water; one risks rinsing off important cells that are needed for the tooth to reattach to the socket. Patients are instructed to call the office immediately. There is a window of approximately 1 hour from the time the tooth is knocked out until it can be re-implanted and splinted into position. Many times patients are able to save a tooth that has been knocked out if they respond quickly and properly. Even with quick action, it may be necessary to have a root canal to save the tooth in the future.
If trauma has occurred and the tooth was not knocked out of the mouth, but merely knocked out of alignment, it is important to quickly see the dentist to have the tooth properly repositioned and splinted into place. Again, it may be necessary for the tooth to have root canal therapy at a later date.
If trauma has occurred and a portion of the tooth was chipped or fractured off, it is also important to quickly be seen. A piece of tooth that is fractured off to the nerve will usually require root canal therapy and the tooth will need to be repaired.
If trauma has occurred and a portion of the tooth has been chipped, but the nerve is not exposed, it is still important to be seen and have the tooth repaired to prevent further tooth deterioration.
Pain from Infected Teeth:
It takes a very long time for infected teeth to cause severe pain. The warning signs for dental decay will typically show up many months before the tooth becomes infected. Nevertheless, when a tooth does become infected, it can be extremely painful. It is important that the dental infection be dealt with quickly to prevent further pain and possibly life threatening infections to the rest of the body.
Fracture of denture or partial denture:
While breaking a denture, or losing or breaking a tooth on a denture or partial denture, may not cause pain, it can be very embarrassing. Dr. Miller is equipped to handle most denture breaks; however, sometimes outside laboratory services may be used. Dr. Miller takes these emergencies seriously.