The global population is experiencing a new “normal” thanks to COVID-19, with people now having to practice and abide by social distancing. These days, most especially, it is now more important than ever to be mindful of germs. But what should you do if you’re facing a dental crisis? Should you immediately seek help at the ER? Let an emergency dentist in Hampton explain why calling your local dentist’s office is the best solution to help keep you and your smile healthy and safe.

When is a Dental Injury a Real Emergency?

While your dental team may normally recommend coming in for most dental emergencies, there are times when at-home care might be best. If you are dealing with a knocked-out tooth or severe tooth pain that is the result of an infection, you will need to see your dentist as soon as possible. Missing teeth that are knocked out must be addressed within an hour in order to keep the tooth viable. Otherwise, you will begin discussions on how to replace it.

If tooth pain is so severe that it becomes almost debilitating, you may need to undergo root canal therapy or tooth extraction to prevent additional problems.

Apart from the two situations listed above, most dental accidents can be treated with home remedies such as an over-the-counter pain reliever, saltwater rinses, cold compresses, and dental wax. When calling your dental office, team members will provide step-by-step instructions on how to handle your particular injury while at home.

Why Is It Better to Visit the Dentist Instead of the ER?

Although most dental offices are closed and seeing only emergency patients, the best course of action you can take is to call your dental team no matter the type of injury. Whether considered minor or serious, staff members can evaluate the situation over the phone and determine whether you should come in to see a dentist immediately or take care of the problem at home. Why is this the best solution? Here are a few reasons:

  1. Emergency rooms are a hotbed of germs, especially right now with COVID-19. By seeing an emergency dentist, you have a lower risk of transmitting germs or contracting the virus.
  2. Hospital staff is working around the clock to treat those who have COVID-19 (coronavirus), so your specific dental injury will most likely be of less importance.
  3. Your dentist in Hampton is continuing to see emergency patients only, so you won’t have to wait to get in.

Not to mention, your dentist has more knowledge, training, and skill in dealing with mouth injuries than a general doctor, so you’ll receive personalized care by someone who knows you and who can offer recommended treatment options to repair and improve your smile.

Not all accidents are preventable. When one occurs within your home, don’t be afraid to call your dentist. They are always here to help, especially when you need them most.

About the Author
Dr. Harbpinder Shevchenko earned her Bachelor of Dental Surgery in India in 2003 before going on to achieve her Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from the Boston University Goldman School of Dental Medicine in 2009. Passionate about her patient’s smiles, she stresses the importance of quality preventive dental care. Providing regular checkups and cleanings, she can address any problem in its early stages and work to eliminate the issue so future dental work will be unnecessary. However, should an emergency arise, Dr. Shevchenko is here to help. If you believe you are experiencing a dental crisis, contact us at (603) 319-4415.