Emergency Dentist – Marietta, GA
Getting Patients Out of Pain & Back to Smiling
Dr. James Merriman has decades of experience and training, which allows him to treat a wide variety of dental emergencies. One of his favorite parts of being a dentist is helping his patients get out of pain and back to smiling. He offers all of the emergency dental services that you or your loved ones may need to stay healthy. In the event of an emergency, you should contact our office right away. However, we have also provided some tips for handling dental emergencies below.
How to Handle Common Dental Emergencies
Dental emergencies can typically be separated into two categories: sudden dental injury and infection that occurs over time. We are able to treat both types of emergencies, but we also want you to know some ways you can make yourself more comfortable before visiting our office.
If you have a toothache, first floss around the area and rinse your mouth out—it may just be some irritating food debris. If pain persists, call our office right away. You may need a root canal to remove infected and damaged tissue while saving your tooth. Until then, you can take over the counter pain medication and avoid chewing on that side of your mouth.
Chipped or broken teeth can be incredibly painful but there is no need to panic! Pick up the pieces of your tooth if you can and store them in a safe place after rinsing them. If there’s bleeding, apply gauze to promote clotting. You can also use a cold compress to numb the area. After you’ve made yourself more comfortable, call our office immediately for treatment. In cases where the tooth is too damaged or fractured, we may need to perform an extraction.
If you knock out a tooth, pick it up by the crown so you don’t damage the roots. Rinse it off before storing it in milk or water to keep it moist. There is often bleeding, but gauze can help until you visit our office. The sooner you can see Dr. Merriman, the more likely it is that we will be able to replant your tooth.
A lost crown or filling can be uncomfortable because it exposes sensitive areas of your tooth. If this occurs, you can use dental cement found at your local drugstore to make a repair. Or, if you’re in a bind, sugar free gum can also serve as temporary protection.
How to Prevent Dental Emergencies
While dental emergencies can never be completely prevented, you can minimize your risk of one occurring by:
- Brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes each session
- Flossing once a day
- Visiting our office for regular checkups and cleanings
- Using a mouthguard during physical activity
- Avoiding using your teeth for anything other than eating and speaking
- Avoiding the use of tobacco products and heavy consumption of alcohol
The Cost of Treating Dental Emergencies
Because there are so many different dental emergencies, we have a variety of treatment options. This means that it’s difficult to give you a precise estimate on the cost of your dental emergency without examining your mouth first. After Dr. Merriman checks out your smile, we can provide a treatment plan that includes price. Additionally, our front desk team will help you with any insurance or financing questions!
Emergency Dentistry FAQs
Even after reading all the information laid out above, you might still have some questions about emergency dentistry. Your emergency dentist, Dr. James Merriman, is more than happy to help get you out of pain quickly should an urgent dental situation arise. For your convenience, we’ve chosen to answer some common emergency questions we get asked down below. If you have a question that you don’t see answered on this page, feel free to contact us and ask!
Should I Be Worried If My Teeth Are Sensitive?
A wide variety of problems can contribute to dental sensitivity, such as enamel erosion or receding gums. If you’ve noticed that your teeth appear longer than usual, this could be the result of advanced gum disease. In this case, you should give our office a call right away so you can avoid complications such as tooth loss. If your sensitivity isn’t caused by receding gums, it very likely isn’t anything to worry about. You can try brushing with a toothpaste designed specifically to alleviate sensitivity. Our team is more than happy to recommend certain products for you to meet your unique oral health needs.
How Can I Be Prepared for a Dental Emergency?
While dental emergencies are not 100 percent preventable, it can help greatly if you have a dental emergency kit on hand in places like your car, your living room, or even in your desk at work. After all, an emergency can occur anywhere at any time. Be sure to include items such as:
- Latex-free gloves
- Saline solution
- Small bottle of ibuprofen
- Individually wrapped gauze pads
- Small container with a secure lid
Should I Call the Emergency Room?
In most cases, you shouldn’t visit the emergency room for a dental emergency except as a last resort, such as if your tooth is fully dislodged and you can’t get ahold of us. This is because many hospitals don’t have a dentist on staff, and as such, they aren’t equipped to handle specific dental situations. At best, they may be able to write you a prescription for painkillers or antibiotics.
The only time you should contact your local ER for a dental emergency is if your condition could also be considered life-threatening. If your jaw is dislocated or fractured, you’re having difficulty breathing or swallowing, or you have a deep facial laceration, your issue should first be addressed by a medical professional. It might be a good idea to contact us afterward to see if any specific dental treatment is needed.
What Happens If I Wait Too Long for Emergency Treatment?
We understand that you might lead a busy life and you might be tempted to wait until you have a free day to deal with your dental emergency. However, in order to keep your oral health in the best possible condition, you’ll need to drop everything and give us a call as soon as an issue arises. Otherwise, your emergency will likely worsen considerably. In the case of a knocked-out tooth, not seeing us in a timely manner could mean the difference between saving and losing your tooth! For the sake of your smile, it’s best to contact us right away when you first notice the signs of an emergency.