When Do You Need an Emergency Tooth Extraction?
Dental emergencies can be difficult to deal with. And it can be hard to tell what does and doesn’t qualify as an emergency. If you’ve broken or cracked a tooth, you might be wondering: When do you need an emergency tooth extraction?
An emergency tooth extraction occurs when your tooth must be removed within 24 or 48 hours. Basically, if the tooth isn’t removed, you could be at risk for oral health complications.
Some of the most common reasons for an emergency tooth extraction include:
- Serious, unexplained pain
- Huge breaks in the tooth
- Big cracks in the tooth
An emergency dentist will usually try to save the tooth, often by putting a crown on it. If the tooth can’t be saved, the tooth will be extracted. Then you’ll have a variety of options to replace it.
At Carolina Dental Arts, we offer services including emergency tooth extraction. We’re also open nights and weekends. These are some key signs that you should give us a call.
1. You have severe pain in your tooth.
Pain is your body’s way of telling you that there’s a problem. Pain in your teeth should never be ignored. In many cases, the issue won’t necessitate an emergency tooth extraction. But it could lead to complications if left untreated.
You might experience ongoing throbbing or ringing pain. Your teeth might also be extremely sensitive to cold and heat. The painful feeling of cold and heat may linger long past the actual touch.
This is nerve pain that indicates something is wrong. You might have worn down your enamel until the root of your tooth is exposed. Or you might have an infection in the root of the tooth. In both cases, this will require a root canal.
Usually the tooth can be saved, but if things progress too far, an emergency tooth extraction might be necessary. Make sure you see an emergency dentist if the pain doesn’t go away with OTC painkillers and ice.
2. You have swelling that isn’t getting better by itself.
Swelling can be a major sign of infection. When an abscess fills with pus, it creates a bulging pocket in the gums. Abscesses are serious infections that don’t get better by themselves.
This is another case in which the dentist will do their best to save the tooth. If you catch the infection early, you should be fine. You’ll drain the abscess and potentially take antibiotics to keep the infection from recurring. You may also need a root canal.
This is a medical emergency. If you wait too long, the infection could spread to other areas of the body. An emergency tooth extraction might be necessary if the tooth is badly decayed and infected.
3. Your tooth has been badly damaged.
In some cases, you might feel a minor chipping of your tooth. This isn’t necessarily an emergency. Your dentist can fill or smooth the chip when you go for a regular visit.
But sometimes there are serious cracks in your tooth. The tooth might split in half, or a large piece might chip off. If the interior of the tooth is exposed, you need to see a dentist right away.
Severe tooth damage leaves you vulnerable to infections. It can also cause other teeth to become damaged due to friction from the broken pieces. The interior tissue may be damaged or wear down more quickly. On top of that, cracked teeth can be very painful, making it hard to chew on the affected side.
Though the best case scenario involves saving your tooth, an emergency tooth extraction is a good thing. This procedure will protect the rest of your teeth from further damage. It will also allow your dentist to clean any abscesses or infections.
There are also many options available to replace an extracted tooth. Permanent dental implants are an option if you’re only missing one tooth.
If you think you need an emergency tooth extraction, contact Carolina Dental Arts. Our practice on New Bern Ave is open every day of the week, including nights and weekends. We are a Spanish-speaking practice offering a wide variety of emergency dental services.