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If an unexpected dental problem occurs, emergency dental care can save you time, hassle, and a great deal of pain and suffering. How do you know what constitutes an emergency? Here are clear warning signs that you may need to make an appointment with an emergency dental clinic in San Antonio, TX, as soon as possible.

Cracks, Chips and Breaks

Teeth may crack or break due to cavities, biting on hard foods, or a slip-and-fall accident. Cracks and breaks cannot be fixed at home. You should see a dentist as soon as possible to assess the damage and have it repaired.

If the crack is small and has not affected the nerve, your dentist may polish it and close it with composite materials and/or add a crown or veneer to prevent the crack from spreading. Small chips may be repaired with polishing and smoothing.

If the damage has affected the nerve and/or blood vessels in the gums, you may need a root canal to remove the damaged nerve. A crown is typically added afterward to protect the tooth and restore its natural look. Dental extraction is a last resort, and it’s only called for when the inside of the tooth has extensive damage.

Cavities

If your teeth hurt when you eat sweets, hot foods, or cold foods, you may have a cavity that has reached the sensitive inner tissue inside the tooth. If this is the case, emergency dental care is needed in order to prevent serious damage that could cause you to lose one or more of your teeth. A dentist will remove the decay, clean out the area and fill the tooth to stop infection and prevent future damage.

Gum Pain

Your gums play an important role in maintaining your dental health. In fact, research indicates that swelling in the gums can negatively affect your overall immune system. If your gums are swollen and/or painful, schedule an appointment with a dental care clinic.

Swelling is often caused by gingivitis, a problem that can lead to more serious gum disease but is easy to treat in its early stages. If you have periodontitis, a more serious gum problem, you may need additional cleanings, deep dental cleanings and/or antibiotics to prevent bone loss, tooth loss and/or gum tissue recession.

Your teeth enable you to talk, eat, and enjoy life. Take care of them by seeing a dentist for regular check-ups twice a year and obtaining emergency dental care when needed. If you’re looking for a dentist to meet all your family’s dental care needs, contact Smiley Dental today.