What Should You do in a Dental Emergency?

It can happen out of the blue and can put a serious dent in your day. If you have sudden onset dental pain you have two choices; you can either take the strongest painkiller you can find and hope for the best, or you can do the sensible thing and look for an emergency dentist in W1. 

Emergency vs regular dentist? 
Why an emergency dentist and not a regular one you ask? As is common with emergencies, very few happen on a 9am-5pm schedule, Monday to Friday, which are the common opening hours of most dental surgeries. If you are about to go to bed when you lose a filling and are hit with a wave of pain, you may not be able to handle the discomfort until morning. Dental practitioners who specialise in treating emergencies usually operate on a 24-hour rota, so they can be reached at any hour, day or night. When visiting a dental practitioner, be aware that they will only be able to offer you emergency treatment. If you need a root canal for instance, they will not be able to offer you one, but will be able to help with the discomfort you are feeling and may prescribe antibiotics. After an emergency dental trip, you should always follow up with your regular dentist as soon as possible to complete the treatment. 

What is a dental emergency? 
A dental emergency, simply put, is a dental issue that requires immediate treatment. This can be due to discomfort; functionality of the tooth being jeopardised or preventive treatment for a larger issue. The most commonly seen dental emergencies include dental abscesses, lost fillings, chipped or broken teeth, excessive bleeding from a tooth or simply, any pain or swelling in the mouth that is distracting you from performing daily tasks. Some of these problems require a more thorough treatment, which should be completed by your regular dentist at your convenience. 

What should I do if I have a dental emergency? 
Most dental surgeries have an emergency dentist or can relay you to the nearest one out of hours. It can be tempting to skip a visit to the emergency dentist and just carry on with your day, particularly if you feel no pain; this is often the case with mildly cracked teeth, broken teeth or lost fillings. Be aware that delaying a visit to the dentist can have repercussions on your oral health. If you have a cracked tooth from playing sport, you need to have the crack repaired or bacteria may enter the tooth and infect the pulp, which then can turn into a very painful abscess. If you have a dental crisis, take some painkillers, search for your nearest emergency dentist and book an appointment with them as soon as you can. Alternatively, you can go to A&- especially if you're bleeding heavily and in a lot of pain.