If you have tooth or gum pain and are wondering if you should visit the dentist, you are facing a decision millions of people have to deal with every year. In general, most dental problems require the assistance of a dentist or at least a dental hygienist. However, some dental maladies are worse than others.
If your pain is considerable or if you are worried the tooth will fall out, the decision to visit with the dentist is not difficult. If the pain is not significant, it is much more of a grey area. Here is a look at some of the top signs that indicate you should visit with the dentist.
A Knocked-out Tooth
If your tooth is knocked out or becomes loose, following contact of any sort, you should visit with the dentist right away. Do not delay. The sooner you have the tooth tended to by a professional, the better the chances are of saving it. The dentist might be able to reinsert the tooth back into position and preserve it.
You can do your part by picking up the tooth by the top or the crown. Do not touch the tooth root. Rinse the tooth but do not scrub it. If you can reinsert the tooth back into the socket, go ahead and do so. Otherwise, put the tooth in a small amount of milk and visit with the dentist right away.
A Chronic Toothache
Chronic tooth pain is a surefire sign your mouth needs professional attention. Whether you have an infected tooth pulp or mild tooth sensitivity, the dentist will determine the cause of the pain and recommend treatment. Have a professional tend to your tooth pain now so you do not end up with an even more expensive treatment in the months or years to come.
A Tooth Abscess
Dental abscesses are particularly painful to the point that they can threaten the patient's life. Abscesses occur when pus accumulates in the tooth, causing an infection. Abscesses can cause everything from tooth sensitivity to fever, a swollen face, tender lymph nodes and other conditions. It is even possible for the abscess to move into the jaw, nearby tissue and other portions of the body.
A Chipped or Cracked Tooth
If your tooth is fractured or in considerable pain, rinse out your mouth with warm water. It is important to make sure that you do not accidentally swallow any portion of the tooth when doing this. Put a cold compress against your face to minimize the swelling. Visit with the dentist right away for an assessment and strategy to return your smile to normal.
Swollen, Inflamed or Bleeding Gums
If your gums are excessively inflamed or swollen, meet with your dentist. While some bleeding will occur when flossing, healthy gums do not bleed when brushing or flossing. An increase in bleeding quantity or frequency is cause for concern. It is possible you have periodontal disease yet you will not know until you meet with your dentist.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with Robert B. Shelton, DDS MAGD, request an appointment in our Longview dental office here: https://www.sheltondentistry.com. Or call us at (903) 757-6243.
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