Emergency Dentist Questions

Dental Emergency FAQs

Dental Emergency FAQs Answered by Your Cerritos Dentist, CA

Dental emergencies aren’t uncommon but because they are so uncomfortable and disruptive, we want to help you avoid them at all costs. That’s why your Cerritos dentist recommends preventative dental care and taking steps as soon as possible to restore damaged teeth.

However, emergencies happen, and when they do, we’re here for you! We set aside appointments every day in our schedule so we can see patients quickly when they’re in pain. If you experience a dental emergency, contact us right away at 562-414-5064.

What Is a Dental Emergency?

A dental emergency is an urgent issue with any part of your mouth (teeth, gums, soft tissues, jawbone, jaw joints, etc.) that requires immediate attention. Common dental emergencies include:

  • A knocked-out tooth
  • A broken tooth
  • Pain due to a crack in the tooth
  • Severe pain caused by an infection
  • Excessive gum bleeding

Dental emergencies can happen to anyone and don’t necessarily mean that someone hasn’t been taking good care of their teeth. Therefore, if you experience a dental emergency in Cerritos, please contact us right away. You will be met with compassion, not judgment.

Here is a bit more information about common dental emergencies.

Dental Pain

The most common reason patients contact their Cerritos dentist after office hours is due to acute dental pain. Pain can be caused by trauma, deep dental decay, an infection, gum inflammation, or objects impacted in the teeth or gums. If you have dental pain, contact us immediately. The longer you wait, the more intense pain you might experience.

A Temporary or Permanent Crown Falls Off

It might not seem like a big deal to lose a crown – especially if it’s a temporary one. Some patients go not just days but weeks or months without contacting their Cerritos dentist because they don’t think it’s a big deal, particularly if they’re not experiencing any pain or sensitivity.

However, losing a crown puts your tooth at risk of developing decay that can travel to the pulp (nerve) of the tooth more quickly because there’s no enamel to protect it. Additionally, crowns act as space maintainers. If you lose one, the adjacent teeth will start to shift, throwing off your bite and causing your crown to no longer fit. If this happens, a new crown will need to be fabricated. That’s an expense we don’t want you to have to pay, so contact our team as soon as you notice your crown is missing.

Knocked-Out Tooth

When you experience facial trauma – due to engaging in contact sports or an accident – you could lose a permanent tooth. The force of the hit you take to the face can knock the tooth right out, root and all.

Contacting your Cerritos dentist immediately can improve the chances of saving your tooth. If the tooth, as well as your gum tissue and bone, are in good shape, we can replant the tooth. Follow-up appointments will be needed to continually evaluate the health of the tooth.

If we aren’t able to reimplant the tooth, you may need a fixed bridge, partial denture, or dental implant to replace the missing tooth.

Broken or Cracked Tooth

Due to trauma, an existing crack, enamel wear, or dental decay, a tooth can fracture. While some people experience little-to-no pain when this happens, others find it extremely painful because the dentin or even the nerve is exposed.

Calling your Cerritos dentist right away can help you get relief fast!

If you have a newly cracked tooth or an existing crack that starts to display symptoms (sensitivity to hot, cold, or bite pressure), we also want to hear about it. The sooner we can see you, the sooner we can alleviate your pain and reduce your risk of further damage.

Lost or Broken Filling

With time and wear, fillings can sometimes become weak and break or even totally dislodge, particularly when you bite down on something hard or sticky.

Failing to repair or restore the filling puts your tooth at risk for further damage, including:

  • The tooth breaking
  • Dental decay
  • Damaged pulp

Gum Inflammation

One of the first symptoms of periodontal disease is inflammation of the gum tissue. However, other illnesses or injuries can result in inflammation, too, such as when an object (popcorn kernel) gets lodged in the gums).

When you contact us for an emergency visit to evaluate your gums, we will check for and remove any foreign objects. If the cause of the inflammation is gum disease, your Cerritos dentist will create a custom treatment plan to help you arrest the disease and establish good oral health.

Bleeding

It isn’t uncommon to bleed a bit after certain dental procedures. But bleeding when you brush or floss, or excessive, random bleeding can be an indicator that something serious is going on.

Bleeding can be a sign of:

  • Periodontal disease
  • Infection
  • Mouth ulcers

Facial Swelling

Facial swelling can be caused by trauma or infection of a tooth, the gum tissue, your jaw joint, and your jawbone. Swelling can be the result of:

  • A tooth infection
  • Gum infection
  • TMJ disorder flare-up
  • Trauma to the face/jaw
  • Blocked salivary gland
  • An allergic reaction to food, medications, or other substances
  • Sinus infection

When you visit your Cerritos dentist, they can determine what’s causing the swelling and provide you with ways to reduce it. Depending on the causes, we may recommend:

  • An ice pack
  • Ibuprofen
  • Antibiotics

Infection/Abscess

Bacteria can attack any weak tissue in the mouth – whether hard or soft – and cause an infection. These include your gums, teeth, throat, and even your salivary glands.

If you notice that you have swollen gums, a toothache, a red or white bump on your gums, or a painful lump on any of your soft tissues, you could have an infection.

Your Cerritos dentist will perform an examination and take digital x-rays to diagnose the cause of the infection. Then, they’ll prescribe antibiotics (if it’s a bacterial infection) and provide you with treatment options to clear up the infection and return you to health.

What Should You Do If You Experience a Dental Emergency?

The short answer: Call us immediately. You can reach us at 562-414-5064. Even if we’re out of the office, our answering service will provide you with instructions and schedule an appointment. In some cases (like an accident), your best bet might be to visit the emergency room to receive immediate treatment and ensure you don’t have any other serious bodily injuries to worry about.

What Should You Do with a Knocked-Out Tooth?

One of the most common questions we get from patients – whether they’ve experienced getting a tooth knocked out or not – is: What should I do with a knocked-out tooth?

We understand why this is such a hot topic. Losing a tooth is scary and traumatizing. Knowing what to do in the moment can help you stay calm and potentially save the tooth.

The first step to take is to contact your Cerritos dentist. Then, take the following steps.

  • Avoid touching the root of the tooth
  • Rinse the tooth with warm water to remove any dirt
  • Avoid scrubbing the tooth
  • If the tooth and the tooth socket are free of dirt and debris, you can try placing the tooth back in the socket
  • If the tooth won’t go back into the socket, wrap it in a soft cloth or gauze if you have it
  • Put the tooth in a saline (salt-water) solution or in milk
  • Bring the tooth to your dental appointment

Do You Still Have Questions About Dental Emergencies in Cerritos?

We’re here to answer them for you! Your Cerritos dentist and their highly trained staff have the knowledge and expertise to answer all your questions and help put your mind at ease. We can answer some of your questions over the phone, but it might be best to schedule a consultation with Dr. Omid. During this appointment, he will answer your questions, address your concerns, and evaluate your oral health needs.

Contact Your Cerritos Dentist At The First Sign Of A Dental Emergency

Are you worried you might have a dental emergency? Don’t hesitate to contact us at 562-414-5064. We’re here for you day or night.