A really bad toothache can make anyone go insane from the pain. The level of pain that comes with a problematic tooth makes us all desperate to find a solution that could, once and for all, make it all stop. In more ways than one, we have desperately thought, “I have a really bad toothache should I go to hospital for care?”
However, what most of us fail to ask is what exactly one should do in case of a really bad bout of tooth pain. Should it be considered an emergency? Though it varies from person to person, there are definitely some signs that can indicate when professional help is needed, which are what we will talk about today.
Really Bad Toothache Should I Go to Hospital for Care? What to Consider an Emergency
As stated above, the notion of an “emergency” is subjective because everyone reacts differently in varying scenarios. If someone feels like their pain or any sort of medical condition is becoming too much to handle, then it can definitely be considered an emergency.
Most of the time, people choose to ignore a dental emergency. Some of this is because of dental anxiety and the strong feelings associated with it. However, most of it is because people don’t really make an emergency out of going to the dentist.
Here are just a few cases wherein someone will want to make going to the dentist a priority.
- Tooth pain when in contact with sweets or cold temperatures
When this type of pain occurs, avoid biting using the painful tooth. Try to eat only room-temperature food and avoid sweets and sweetened drinks. This is usually an indicator of a cavity, and the tooth’s nerve can still be saved. Make a dentist appointment as soon as possible to solve the issue.
- Tooth pain when in contact with heat
This type of pain is a bit more serious than the first one. First off, avoid eating warm food. Don’t postpone a dentist visit because, in most cases, pain when in contact with heat means an infection. As pus continues to build up and the tissue continues to get more and more swollen, the pain will become increasingly worse.
- Pain that follows a fresh filling
If you’re experiencing pain after getting a brand new filling, it’s important to know what to do. For the first three or four days, you can just take some mild pain medication. If the pain persists, though, then schedule a dentist appointment as soon as possible. This might mean that the infected tooth hasn’t been cleaned properly and that the filling needs to be removed and replaced.
- Swelling or tooth abscess
Here’s why it’s important to visit the dentist as soon as possible when suffering from a tooth abscess and gum swelling. More often than not, these are caused by infections, and only a professional can correctly diagnose them and prescribe proper treatment.
Taking antibiotics without a proper prescription isn’t healthy, and might not even be necessary in many cases.
Make sure to go to the dentist as soon as you can if you’re suffering from a tooth abscess. In the meantime, use mouthwash and try to clean the cavity as much as possible. Pain and anti-inflammatory medicine is also a good way to manage the discomfort until visiting the dentist.
- Swollen face
A swollen face can be caused by two things: a cavity or an intervention. In case of a cavity, try to avoid using the tooth in question. This is considered an emergency, so make sure to go to the dentist as soon as you can. In the meantime, use some mild pain medication or anti-inflammatory pills.
In case of surgical intervention, a swollen face is normal. It’s the body’s way of dealing with trauma. After 48 hours, the swelling should start going away by itself. Apply cold compresses without using ice. More compresses mean less swelling, so keep them coming.
If after four or five days of waiting the swelling still persists, then go to the dentist or even the hospital, since this can mean an infected wound.
- Chipped tooth
If you chip a tooth, then it’s important to get to the dentist or dental professional as soon as possible. This is a serious dental emergency. Keep the chipped tooth in a sterile vessel. Depending on the size of the chipped part and the damage done to the tooth, it might be glued back on to the main tooth at the same angle.
If the tooth has popped out of its socket, it might be possible for it to be planted back. In order to do this, it’s very important to go to a professional within three hours. Avoid touching the root of the tooth and keep it in a sterile vessel. If the trauma is caused by an accident or conflict, call the local emergency service dispatch.
- Bleeding gums
Bleeding gums is a good example of a condition that might seem more serious than it actually is. The bleeding is usually caused by brushing with a wrong toothbrush. If the bleeding persists and doesn’t go away by itself, putting a clean piece of cloth or cotton on the affected area might help. If it persists, then try to go and get some emergency help.
- Losing a filling
Losing a filling is annoying, but it can’t be considered a medical emergency in most cases. If it becomes overly-sensitive, though, then it might become painful when coming in contact with cold and warm elements. In cases like this, it is still a good idea to go to the dentist so he or she can correct the problem.
It’s important to keep avoiding dental emergencies. The best ways of doing so are to:
- Schedule regular check-ups
- Get help as soon as any sort of symptoms manifest
- Keep good dental hygiene
Even if dental anxiety is a real thing and a lot of people suffer from it, it’s important to get past this point and receive medical help. In most cases, infections can lead to very serious problems. Gingivitis can become periodontitis, which will require surgery to reverse, an abscess can start eating through the bone, and who knows what else.
Keep flossing and brushing, and go to the dentist as soon as you spot a cavity, a bump, or anything that might be cause for concern.