When most people think of a dental emergency, they think of dramatic situations, such as accidentally breaking or knocking out a tooth. These are certainly emergencies, but not every emergency situation involving your dental health is that dramatic, or even obvious. For example, some emergency situations can develop over time until they reach a critical point. Others might occur without you realizing it because they don’t cause immediate discomfort. Today, we take a look at what a dental emergency really means, and a few less obvious times that might call for emergency dental treatment.
What a dental emergency means
Technically, a dental emergency can be one of many different conditions that affect your teeth and/or oral tissues severely enough to require immediate attention and treatment. In obvious cases, such as accidental dental trauma, that need can be apparent. Both the cause of the condition (traumatic impact to your tooth or oral structures) and the extent of it (a fractured, broken, or knocked out tooth) can be roughly determined on your own. However, other, more progressive conditions can also lead to similar levels of harm to your oral health, and the need for emergency treatment can be just as important.
Times when you need emergency treatment
- Severe tooth decay – Tooth decay, which causes a cavity to form in your tooth, is the most common chronic dental health issue for patients of all ages. Because it develops and progresses through different stages of severity, it’s often treated successfully before it has a chance to become severe. However, if it does, the decay in your tooth’s structure can reach the tooth’s nerves and blood vessels, housed in the pulp chamber and root canal. If necessary, emergency treatment could help save the tooth from being lost or needing to be extracted.
- A lost or broken restoration – If you do treat tooth decay early, or any form of damage to your tooth structure, then the restoration placed in or on your tooth could be paramount to its long-term health and integrity. If the restoration breaks, fails, or is lost, then the tooth can become immediately at-risk of experiencing more severe infection, or becoming more extensively damaged. Your tooth may not hurt at first, which is why it’s important to care for your restoration properly and pay close attention to it every day.
Call us if you experience a dental emergency
If you experience signs of a dental emergency, then don’t hesitate to seek treatment for it. To learn more, schedule a consultation by calling the Dental Centre of Conroe in Conroe, TX, today at (936) 441-4600. We serve patients from Conroe and all neighboring communities.