Guide to Dental Emergencies
Dental emergency is essentially a broad term used to describe a problem related to the teeth and tissues, which is of critical importance and needs to be treated by a professional. It is not necessary for dental emergencies to be painful even though it is a typical indication that the situation is serious and needs attention.
SEEK EARLY ADVICE AND GO TO YOUR DENTIST AS SOON AS POSSIBLE
The pain in a dental emergency can emerge from the tooth or its surrounding tissues. It can also give the feeling of developing in the teeth, but the cause may be an external source. By analysing the type of pain, a clinician would be able to suggest the probable cause and can offer treatment as different kinds of tissues give varying messages at the time of a dental emergency.
There are different types of emergencies which can vary from fungal/bacterial/viral infections to a cracked or broken tooth or restoration. Each of them requires a distinct analysis and treatment which is specific to the situation.
Types of dental emergencies
There are various kinds of dental emergencies that may require immediate attention of a professional dentist. Below are some scenarios where urgent medical care by a dental clinician may be required:
- Enamel fracture: It basically refers to the loss of the surface or exterior of the tooth restricted at the enamel. It typically requires smoothening of edges, tooth restoration or attachment of tooth fragment, if it is available. The seriousness of the issue depends upon the size of the fracture.
- Root and crown fracture: This kind of a fracture is related to cementum and dentin, but not essentially the pulp. Several treatments are available for root and crown fracture. The treatment option depends upon the clinical analysis.
The first step involves the stabilisation of loose elements with cementing in case the fragment is still accessible. In case the fragment is misplaced, the dentist will conduct a supragingival restoration.
- Extrusion: Extrusion refers to a situation when a tooth becomes loose and there is slight displacement out of the socket. The alveolar bone is not affected, but there could be fractional or complete breaking away of the periodontal ligament.
- Avulsion: It is a situation when the tooth is entirely moved out of the socket. If urgent action is not taken, the periodontal ligament can get desiccated and lead to pulpal necrosis.