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Dental Emergencies

Emergency Dental Care in Urbandale, IA

Dental emergencies happen unexpectedly and they can be frightening stressful situations. At Lawson Family Dentistry we provide urgent, emergency dental in Urbandale, IA. We do our best to accommodate same-day appointments to get you out of pain and smiling again. We aim to treat and resolve the problem as soon as possible.

There are many different types of dental emergencies. If you experience any of the following, call your dentist right away. Many dental emergencies are time-sensitive, in order to salvage a tooth or prevent infection, it’s important to get treatment as soon as you can. 

Cracked Tooth 

Whether you have just bitten down into something a little too hard, you’ve been injured or you had a brittle tooth that has started to fracture, a cracked tooth is considered a dental emergency. Deeply cracked teeth can be incredibly painful and they can cause damage and infection to the pulp of the tooth if they are left untreated. 

Once you arrive at our clinic, the dentist will carefully examine your cracked tooth. If the fracture is not too deep (above the gumline) there is a good chance that the tooth can be repaired. If this is the case the tooth will be carefully cleaned, sterilized and sealed with dental bonding. You may require a permanent dental crown in a follow-up appointment to ensure the tooth is stable and protected. However, we can also provide same-day dental crowns. These provide immediate relief and protection for the fragile tooth. Same-day crowns are fast, effective, and convenient, ask our team if they would be a good fit for you. 

If the crack is quite deep (below the gum line) and parts of the tooth have chipped off, your dentist may suggest an immediate tooth extraction instead. Tooth extractions are an incredibly common procedure and a replacement tooth implant can fill the missing gap. If the tooth cannot be salvaged, an extraction may be necessary. This treatment is most often performed under local anesthetic in the dental clinic and lasts no longer than 2 hours. 

Lost Filling 

If you have lost a dental filling, it’s best to call your dentist for an appointment. Dental fillings can last for an average of 10-20 years with proper care. However, like our natural teeth, fillings are also susceptible to wear and tear.

Fillings can chip off or fall out completely if you bite down too hard, or injure yourself. Your dental filling protects the delicate teeth that have had cavities. These teeth are weakened and require the strength of fillings to prolong their natural life. If you go without a filling for too long, your weakened underlying tooth is more susceptible to harmful bacteria, breakage and fracture. 

At times, it can be difficult to detect whether or not you have lost a filling. It is not always painful, especially if your filling was small. If the filling has fully fallen out, you may notice a sensitivity to hot and cold foods, or pain when you bite down. You may also feel a rough patch with your tongue or deeper hole in your tooth than before. This is a sign that the filling is either partially or completely missing. The most obvious sign that your filling has fallen out is feeling it come off in your mouth. If you can shift or dislodge the filling with your tongue, it’s a sign that it has come loose and you need to have it replaced. 

At Lawson Family Dentistry, we can repair or replace your lost filling during your emergency appointment. It is a fast procedure that can be done within an hour. 

Emergency Crown

Dental crowns are used to protect and support fragile teeth. The longer you go without a dental crown, the more damage you can do. 

You can lose a crown from biting down too hard, it can also be dislodged in an accident, or come loose due to illness or tooth decay. If you suspect a lost crown, try to avoid chewing or biting down on the tooth until you can see your dentist. 

During your emergency visit, your dentist will carefully clean the tooth and place a temporary crown to protect your tooth while a new crown is made. We can also provide same-day dental crowns in most circumstances. These will replace your lost crown and provide protection and stability in order to prolong the life of your tooth. Same-day crowns can often be done during your emergency visit and they are incredibly convenient. 

Emergency Root Canal 

Root canal infections can be incredibly painful and they often require emergency dental care. They are most often caused by bacterial infections in the tooth. Like cavities, bacteria infect the tooth, permeating deep into its inner pulp. If they are not treated promptly, they can lead to abscesses that build up under the tooth. Root canals are characterized by sharp, persistent, throbbing pain in one or more teeth. You may also notice redness, swelling and pus. 

During an emergency root canal, your dentist will take x-rays of the affected area. They will then prepare your mouth by cleaning and sanitizing the teeth. Once clean, your dentist will use a local anesthetic to numb the tooth and the surrounding gums and nerves. They make a small incision into the tooth and carefully drill into the inner layers. In root canal surgery, your dentist must remove all of the infected root pulp. 

Once the infection is removed, your dentist will fill the tooth in order to help keep it strong. They will also provide a temporary crown that must be replaced with a permanent version within 1-2 weeks. Root canal surgery is a way to preserve an infected tooth and prolong its life. 

Pain Relief 

At Lawson Family Dentistry, we know that dental emergencies can be painful and uncomfortable. It is our job to get you out of pain as soon as possible. In order to treat the underlying problem faster, we want to ensure you have a relaxing, pain-free appointment. Therefore, we offer two different types of sedation dental services for our patients. 

Local Anesthesia / Numbing 

Local anesthesia numbs certain painful areas in and around the mouth. You are fully conscious and aware of your surroundings while under local anesthesia and the majority of emergency dental procedures can be performed with this method of pain relief. 

We offer Anutra as our method of local anesthesia. Anutra can be administered via syringe. It is fast-acting and allows for faster treatment time. We use a product called OraVerse after your procedure to reverse the effects of local anesthesia, so you can smile and talk as usual. 

Nitrous Oxide 

Nitrous Oxide, also known as ‘laughing gas’ is a mild sedative that will help you feel calm during your appointment. It is a light sedative that can help those who experience anxiety when visiting the dentist. 

Your dentist may also suggest you take over the counter pain medications to help reduce swelling or pain after a surgery or emergency procedure. If you experience pain in any area of your mouth, contact your dentist to get to the root of the problem. Your dentist will help to relieve the pain and treat the condition at hand. 

What to do During a Dental Emergency 

Your dentist is just a call or a click away, and dental care should be sought right away if you experience a dental emergency. However,  there are some things you can do on your way to get treatment to help ease pain and swelling. 

  • If you notice swelling or redness, you can place an ice pack on your cheek where you feel pain. The cold will help to reduce swelling while you await treatment. 
  • Gargle with warm salt water if you notice pus forming around the gums. This can help with bacterial infections or abscessed teeth
  • If you have lost a tooth or have a chipped tooth, keep the tooth (or part of the tooth) in water to keep it moist. In some rare cases, missing teeth can be replaced if the tissues are still healthy and living. Keeping the tooth in water will help to prolong its life while you get to your dentist. 

Visit Lawson Family Dentistry

Most importantly, know that we are here for you, whether you are a previous patient or you have never been to our clinic before, you are in expert hands. Dental emergencies can be traumatic, but with professional care, the team at Lawson Family Dentistry in Urbandale, IA  will be able to resolve the situation and get you the treatment you need right away. 

During your emergency dental appointment, we will thoroughly examine the problem at hand and work to address any other dental concerns you may have during your visit. Most dental emergencies can be resolved during a same-day appointment, so you can get back to your daily life right away. Contact us to book an appointment, or call 515-278-4366

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