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Ballston Dental Arts
900 N Taylor Street, Suite 150, Arlington, VA 22203

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When to Seek Help for a Dental Emergency in Arlington

Dental emergencies are frightening since they come out of the blue. You can wake up one morning with a throbbing tooth or trip on a sidewalk and knock a tooth loose. You need emergency treatment quickly to stop the pain and have the best chance of saving your tooth. Our experienced dental team can help you with walk-in dental care in many cases, even if you are not a regular patient. Please contact us to arrange an emergency visit to our convenient dental office.

Where Do I Go If I Have a Dental Emergency in Arlington?

Many situations are emergencies, but some are more severe than others. Obviously, unbearable pain not relieved with OTC painkillers is an emergency, as is oral swelling and bleeding. Do not hesitate to call us if you’re experiencing:

  • Oral pain with a fever
  • A fractured tooth
  • A loose tooth
  • A knocked-out tooth, which is a time-sensitive dental emergency
  • Gum bleeding from an injury
  • Any trauma to your cheek, lips or tongue that causes heavy bleeding

Also, oral swelling that extends down your throat and affects your breathing is a serious dental emergency. If you cannot control the swelling, call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room.

Cavities are another reason for emergency dental appointments. Large cavities can cause severe pain. You can avoid this problem by seeing a dentist twice a year for routine exams. Your dentist can catch the cavity early, before it causes you pain. Nevertheless, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that nearly 32 percent of adults have at least one untreated cavity.

Other reasons to make a dental appointment for an emergency include:

  • Losing a dental crown or filling
  • Having a veneer pop off
  • Seeing blood when you brush your teeth
  • Sudden tooth sensitivity
  • Having a dental bridge or denture break

While these may not seem like emergencies, they need attention. Please phone our practice and we will schedule a dental appointment for you within a day or two.

7 Symptoms of a Dental Emergency in Arlington

Seek emergency services right away if you’re experiencing:

1. Dry Socket Pain: When you have a tooth extraction, the site usually heals quickly. In rare cases, a blood clot does not form or it becomes dislodged. Dry socket can heal on its own in a week or two; however, you won’t want to be in extreme pain for this long. Our dentist can help to alleviate your pain.

2. Facial Swelling: Facial swelling near the mouth could come from a tooth abscess, inflammation around an emerging wisdom tooth or an injury. In any case, you should treat the problem as a dental emergency and see a dentist to diagnose the problem and treat it.

3. Excessive Oral Bleeding: If your inner lip, inner cheek or tongue were lacerated and you can’t control the bleeding after 15 minutes of applying pressure, please call our office for expert emergency care. You should also call us if the bleeding won’t stop after an extraction.

4. A Broken Filling: You’ll require emergency care as there is no way to fix a broken filling yourself. Decay can enter the cavity and cause further deterioration.

5. Gum Injuries: A gum injury is an emergency if there is uncontrolled bleeding or uncertainty whether any teeth were affected.

6. A Fractured Jaw: If you fracture your jaw, you’ll notice pain or numbness, swelling and possibly bleeding from the mouth. You’ll also have trouble getting your teeth to align correctly. Always treat a fractured jaw from a blow or fall as an emergency and seek prompt dental treatment.

7. Knocked-Out Tooth: If you have a knocked-out tooth, it is vital that you get an emergency appointment with a dentist. Pick up the tooth by the crown, never the root, and very gently rinse it in warm water. Put it back in the socket if possible. If you cannot, put the tooth in a container filled with milk and bring it in with you. People who practice extreme sports may want to consider a tooth preservation kit approved by the ADA. It can preserve the tooth for up to 24 hours, which is helpful if you are not near a dentist.

Tooth Abscess

A tooth abscess is an infection inside the pulp of the tooth. It usually occurs when a cavity goes untreated and the bacteria reaches the pulp. Bacteria can also get inside the pulp if a tooth fractures. Because the bacteria causes inflammation, the condition is generally very painful as the pulp swells inside the tooth. Other symptoms include a bad taste in your mouth and intense temperature sensitivity.

If you have an abscess, you need emergency care from a dentist. An abscess won’t go away on its own. If left untreated, the infection can spread to other parts of your body and in rare cases, it can cause death.

Is a Broken Tooth a Dental Emergency?

Everyone can agree that cracking a tooth from a forceful impact is traumatic. If this happens, we urge you to contact our office right away so our emergency dentist can fix the damage and prevent future problems. You may not feel any pain, but it is still important to seek treatment. Your treatment will depend on the extent of the fracture.

We prefer to provide dental routine care, including six-month exams and teeth cleanings, to help our patients avoid needing emergency care. You can also prevent emergencies, such as a cracked or broken tooth, by wearing a mouth guard during contact sports or if you grind your teeth at night. Your dentist can supply you with a well-fitting custom appliance to protect you. You can also purchase a boil-and-bite guard approved by the American Dental Association online or in a store.

If you are experiencing a dental emergency in Arlington and you are in severe pain, please call our office or contact us online for an appointment. We can take care of the pain and restore your dental health. You’ll receive the dental care and attention you deserve.

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Ballston Dental Arts

900 N Taylor Street, Suite 150, Arlington, VA 22203

(703) 291-3111