a different kind of dentistry.

Lexington Dentist


4 Signs You Need Emergency Dental Care

Young woman has a dental emergency

Even if you visit us regularly for a dental checkup and cleaning, there are times when an urgent situation could require more immediate care. There are some telltale signs that an oral problem can’t wait weeks or months before receiving care from our trained dental team. It may not be causing you any discomfort yet, but left unchecked it can turn into a more serious issue. Here are 4 signs you need emergency dental care…

1. A Tooth Feels Loose

Adult teeth should be well-anchored, not moving around when you eat and speak. There are a few reasons you might end up with a tooth that’s loose: one of them could be a direct injury. It may be an injury that is caused by impact, or perhaps something you bit into that has caused damage. However, this can also point to signs of an infection. Periodontal disease (gum disease) is one possible cause, as it affects the gum tissues responsible for holding your teeth in place. Our dentist Dr. Michael Moulton can examine your teeth and gums using imaging to get a clear picture of what is causing the tooth to feel loose.

2. You Have a Dental Abscess

A dental abscess is a painful condition that can be caused by an unchecked cavity or gum disease. It can also be the result of an injury (such as a chipped tooth) that allows harmful bacteria to accumulate. An abscess is not always localized to the affected tooth or gums. It can also cause a fever, noticeably swollen glands, and even a bad taste in your mouth from the infection.

Our dental team can quickly assess the issue and treat an abscess, which may require draining. A root canal is another possible solution.

3. You Have Jaw Pain or Recurring Headaches

Constant headaches that have no apparent cause may be signs you are grinding your teeth. This is a condition called bruxism, and it can put a strain on teeth that can wear them down. If this happens, a dental crown or another procedure may be needed to repair them. The grinding of teeth can also lead to a painful condition known either as TMJ or TMD, which affects the hinge that connects your jaw to your skull. While emergency dental care may be necessary to address the symptoms, there are ways to help avoid issues from grinding including using a mouthguard that we can custom fit to your mouth.

4. You Have a Severe Toothache

If your tooth is hurting constantly, then it’s likely a sign you need to see us as soon as possible. Our team can provide relief as well as diagnosing the underlying cause for your severe toothache, whether it’s an infection or another problem. While some people may experience mild toothaches and sensitivity, prolonged or severe pain likely means there’s something more serious happening that needs a professional.

Don’t Put Off Emergency Dental Care

Pain, swelling, and loose teeth are all signs you should make an appointment with us as soon as possible. Left unchecked, these issues could increase in severity. Our dental team effectively assesses the problem and recommends the best course of action, as well as outlining prevention techniques for the future. To find out more or make an appointment for emergency dental care, contact us today.