Tag Archives: dental emergency

What’s Wrong With My Root Canal?

Hi there,

I fractured my teeth playing sports a few months back, and was treated by an emergency dentist and released. A few weeks after the accident, my teeth became grey and discolored.  I was in severe pain and had swelling, so I had to go back to the dentist for an emergency root canal.

I was ok for a few days with antibiotics but now the pain is back. I don’t know what to do to get the pain to go away. My tooth is sensitive to cold food and even chilly air. I’m very uncomfortable and want the pain to stop.

Should I have gotten a root canal sooner? Do I need more antibiotics? What can I do about the pain?

Luca, from Quebec, Montreal

 

Hi Luca,

A discolored tooth means there is damage to the root, or an infection may be present. It needs a root canal treatment as soon as possible at the first sign of greying. Once the root is removed, the bacteria is cleared up and the tooth is sealed to prevent further problems. Leaving an infected tooth in your mouth longer than it needs to be there serves no purpose. Oral infections should be taken seriously, as they can spread to other parts of the body if left untreated too long.

It sounds like your root canal treatment was sealed before all the bacteria was removed, which is causing a flare up. Usually, the infection is allowed time and space to drain, but since it has been sealed, there is no where for it to go. Also, a few days of antibiotics is not enough time to be on the medication.

Your best bet is to find an endodontist specializing in root canals. They can fix what has been started, and will advise you on how to properly take your antibiotics for maximum effectiveness.

This blog post is brought to you by Gilbert emergency dentist, Dr. Matthew Roper, of Vista Dorada Dental.

 

 

Can I Put Off a Root Canal?

Hello,

My dentist told me I needed a root canal on my tooth, but I don’t have any pain. How long can I put off getting a root canal?

Haruka, from West Virginia

 

Hi Haruka,

If your tooth is not hurting, or has not hurt in awhile, it may be ok to delay it. It may be what’s called an arrested infection or a latent infection — you may have one but not know it. However, you can still be affected by the infection even if it doesn’t cause pain. Putting off a root canal raises the risk of external resorption —slowly, the infection will eventually kill the root, and the tooth won’t be salvageable. However, an infection caused by active decay will continue until the tooth is destroyed, and action must be taken immediately.

Even without pain, if you have a red pimple-like spot on your gum near the root tip, or the infection is draining in your mouth, these are signs of an active infection. You should make an appointment with your general dentist to get this taken care of. If your pain comes back or you feel severe pain, you should see an emergency dentist.

This blog post is brought to you by Gilbert emergency dentist, Dr. Matthew Roper, of Vistadorada Dental.

 

Should my husband have received a root canal at emergency dentist?

My husband had a tooth that was causing him a great deal of pain for over a year. Throughout that time, I would periodically remind him that it was likely going to result in a root canal if he did not have it checked out. As I had warned him, he ended up dealing with a terrible toothache and had to make a trip to an emergency dentist. However, the emergency dentist only treated him with a crown. Should he have had a root canal?

Thank you,

Karen

Dear Karen,

There are many causes of tooth pain. A cavity, cracked tooth, infection, and numerous other problems can cause pain. Typically, when the decay reaches the center of a tooth, or is near a nerve, it causes the nerve to send signals of distress in the form on pain or discomfort. They can also be necessary if a tooth becomes infected or dead. Needless to say, tooth pain doesn’t always equal a root canal, as different causes of pain need to be treated in different ways.

The emergency dentist should have explained the diagnosis to you, so you knew what was occurring and why. If he failed to do so, you could call the office and find out exactly what was wrong with the tooth.

Something else to learn from this experience is that you can’t waste any time when it comes to tooth problems. The quicker a problem is addressed, the less treatment is typically needed.

This post was brought to you by Gilbert emergency dentist, Dr. Matt Roper.

Was I misdiagnosed by an emergency dentist?

I saw an emergency dentist a couple of days ago and am very upset. A little over a year, it was suggested I get a filling, and I have been putting it off. I mentioned this to the emergency dentist but added that the tooth next to that tooth was the one giving me the trouble at the time of my emergency visit. I indicated the issues I’d been having on the phone, therefore assumed they were going to do the fillings during my visit.

During my visit, he ran a few tests. In other words, he hit my teeth with his mirror a few times. Since my teeth were hurting when I went in, this caused me even more pain. He then proceeded to tell me that I needed a filling, but not on the tooth in question. I then asked about the tooth with the pre-existing cavity, to which he answered also needed a filling. He then told me I would need to come back. I’m still in pain. The visit to the emergency dentist did nothing! Do you think it’s possible that I could have an infection, or something else serious? I don’t want the issue to go unnoticed just because that dentist was in a rush to get through the appointment.

Thanks,
Doug


Dear Doug,

Typically, most infections are obvious. If the dentist performed an x-ray and exam, the infection would have been hard to miss. Cavities are capable of causing tooth pain, especially if they are deeply rooted. Not always are they indicators of infection or a need for a root canal. Regarding the tests, the dentist was likely trying to determine which teeth were causing you trouble, in order to recommend the best treatment route. It’s possible that your tooth could have passed its pain onto its neighboring tooth, or it could be cracked and be causing the pain, which is not always obvious, even with an exam or x-ray. However, the tests are a critical part of a thorough exam. That all being said, it’s alarming that your second cavity was not mentioned until you brought it up. This does indicate that your dentist was rushing through his work, making it understandable to question his assessment.

Moving forward, it would be wise for you to have those fillings done as soon as you can, and consider using a different dentist. It’s important to keep in mind that not all dentists allow time for the work when they haven’t completed an exam. This is because they don’t the amount of time that will be needed, or whether or not the patient will go through with the procedure due to the costs. If you do schedule your fillings with another provider, consider an early appointment, and be sure to pass on that your teeth have recently been diagnosed and the recommended treatment. Finally, ask if they could set aside time for the repairs during this appointment.

This post was written by the office of Gilbert emergency dentist, Dr. Matt Roper.

 

Why is my tooth turning gray after I went to an emergency dentist?

Several weeks ago, I visited an emergency dentist because of an intense toothache. After his assessment, he concluded my tooth was fine, but it did have a small crack in it. He later placed a new crown, and, although the pain was better, it was not gone. The dentist suggested that I would need a root canal if the pain did not go away. While it is better, it has not gone away. However, I would prefer to not have a root canal, so I’ve been trying to remedy the pain with Ibuprofen, but there really hasn’t been any change, and today, I noticed the tooth next to it changing to an almost gray color. Is it possible that the crown is whiter than my other tooth? Or, is it possible that the work of the emergency dentist I saw could have done something to the other tooth?

Thank you,
Vicki

Dear Vicki,

Teeth turn gray when they are dead or injured, similar to our skin bruising after trauma, but our teeth are behind an enamel surface. The treatment for this is a root canal because the tooth needs cleaned out and filled from the inside, to prevent the build-up of bacteria, which will, in turn, cause infection. The sooner this issue can be addressed, the better.

It is unlikely that the emergency dentist caused this. It could be that your tooth was hurt or damaged all along. Teeth often cause the teeth around them to be in pain. If this is the case, the original diagnosis may be incorrect. Another possibility is that both of your teeth could have been injured at the same time. This would be true, for example, if you bit down on something hard, causing trauma to the graying tooth, and causing its neighbor tooth to crack. While the tooth may not have died right away, it could be slowing fading with time. Finally, it is possible that the two teeth have issues which are completely unrelated. Lastly, you could be looking at two totally unrelated incidents, which happen to be affecting two neighbor teeth. You will likely never know if the original diagnosis was incorrect. However, if you believe this is the case, ask the original dentist for a copy of the x-ray and seek another option from a different dentist, and also have the gray tooth assessed. If something was missed on the original x-ray, you should receive a refund for what you paid to have the crown done. However, if nothing was missed, the dentist’s actions were based on your original symptoms, and the diagnosis may or may not have been correct.

This post is sponsored by Gilbert emergency dentist, Dr. Matthew Roper.

Can I Still Get Dental Sedation If I Take Anxiety Meds?

I’m on two medications. One for depression and one for anxiety. I want to get sedation when I have my dental procedure done but I’m worried they won’t let me. Can you tell me what sedation medications they use so I can make sure it’s fine with my medication? I’m afraid if I tell them about the meds they’ll send me away.

Lisa W.

Dear Lisa,

Dental Sedation

The problem with your request is two-fold. One, every dentist uses different sedation medication so there would be no way to know whether or you’d be checking the right medication. Second, your dosages make a difference as to how much the dentist can give you. I know you’re worried about being sent packing, but that won’t happen.

Dentists who deal with anxious patients are used to patients on multiple medications. The only thing you’ll need to do is schedule a consultation with your dentist so he or she can make sure whatever they use will work well with what you’re taking.

If what they use would interfere they will either change what they use or make arrangements with another dentist who prefers the other medicine to work with you.

Dental anxiety is common and you shouldn’t feel embarrassed by it, but what you’re doing is brave. You’re facing your fears to get the treatment you need. That puts you ahead of many patients who can’t do that and then end up with a dental emergency.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Matt Roper.

Is This Affordable Dentist Legit?

I saw this dentist who advertised as an affordable dentist. I have a cavity. I was hopeful if I found an affordable dentist I’d be able to get a white filling, which my insurance won’t cover. I decided to go by the office and get a look first. Just to make sure it wasn’t like some backwater office that looks barely sanitary.  I walked in and the place was immaculate. Impeccably decorated, flat screen TVs.  How can the office look this wealthy and still be affordable?

Abigail W. – Arkansas.

Abigail,

It’s interesting that you went to peek at the office before scheduling. That may, in part, be the answer to your question. If you think about how families spend money, it will help, too. Let’s say you have two families which earn the same amount of money. One home can be immaculately decorated, but the family rarely travels. Another can keep their home neat, but frugally decorated. Instead, they use the money for travel.

This dentist has a certain amount of money to work with. He spends some on advertising (which would include the appearance of his lobby).  The rest he can use how he wants. This dentist may prefer a beautiful office, but keeps his prices low to help patients.  He may cut his profits. Or maybe he keeps a leaner staff than most.

Call and ask what his prices are for white fillings. That should give you some idea of if his prices are as affordable as you’d hoped. Whatever you do, don’t just leave the cavity. It will spread and will likely blow up into an infection, leaving you with a dental emergency.

Now, what could have been a simple filling will turn into an expensive dental crown or, worse, a complete tooth replacement such as a dental implant.

One thing to bear in mind is that you can get a white filling and your dentist will charge your insurance for the amalgam filling. You’ll only need to make up the difference, saving you some money right off the bat.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Matt Roper.

 

Will Snap-On Smile work for my son?

Hello,

My son is eight years old and he has chipped his tooth pretty badly. It’s almost broken in half. The dentist filled it, but it broke within a week. It doesn’t seem to hurt him since the roots are unharmed. We’ve been told that he isn’t old enough to have his tooth capped. Will the Snap-On Smile work for him?

– Maya from Indiana

Maya,
Snap-On Smile works well to temporarily give the appearance of a straight, white smile. In the particular case of your son, I’m not sure this is the way to go.

If his tooth is broken, then placing this Snap-On Smile appliance over his tooth is doing nothing to address the real problem. Direct dental bonding with porcelain or composite materials can fix this problem for your son. And it needs to be done correctly so that it does not interfere with his biting or chewing. Although, you will need to seek the talents of a true cosmetic dentist. Not just any family dentist will be able to do this kind of work well.

There are some other issues to choosing Snap-On Smile for your son. Not only will it feel bulky, a boy his age may lose it. Also, he has a combination of permanent and baby teeth. This means that fitting the appliance correctly will be difficult since his bite is changing so rapidly. The appliance itself may also get in the way of new teeth that are erupting.

The reason the repair you mentioned failed is likely due to the fact that it got in the way of his bite. When he is a bit older, he will have all his permanent teeth and this will be less of an issue. It is difficult to make anymore recommendations without actually seeing this particular case. Therefore, I highly recommend consulting with an expert cosmetic dentist to present your options to you.

The tooth will look and function normally if it is done correctly.

Best of luck to you.

This post is sponsored by Gilbert dentist Vista Dorada Dental.

Related link: emergency dentist

How dangerous is an infected tooth?

So here’s the deal… I think I have a broken molar. It’s way in the back right next to the spot where my wisdom tooth used to be. I have very painful sensations in my cheek and jaw and up into my sinuses. Now the pain has radiated to my head, ear, and even into my neck. The best way to describe it is that the pain starts in my ear and moves all the way around into my neck.

Do you think this is a dental emergency? I don’t have dental insurance and don’t have the money for a tooth extraction? It may not be the tooth at all and maybe is more related to my sinuses. Can you tell me if I’m in any danger or give me an idea of what is going on?

– Cindy in Georgia

Cindy,

What you have described sounds very dangerous. It sounds like you have a tooth infection from the broken tooth. And now it is spreading which will continue if you don’t get it taken care of as soon as possible.

You may check with a local hospital or dental agency to see if they will help you out. Many areas will treat residents that need serious procedures done. Keep calling around and if you can’t find someone to help, just go to the emergency room. They will be able to help you temporarily.

Antibiotics is important to treat the infection. But most importantly you need to have the tooth taken out or repaired so the you don’t build up resistance to the antibiotic. If you only take the antibiotic and don’t take care of the tooth, you risk a more serious problem than you already have. The reason for this is that the medication will not get inside the infected tooth. What needs to be done is a tooth extraction or root canal treatment.

Act soon before it gets worse!

This post is sponsored by Gilbert dentist Vista Dorada Dental.

Related Links: Dental bonding; Sedation dentist

Porcelain Veneer Came Off

It has been over 10 years now that I had porcelain veneers placed on my upper teeth. I really like them a lot, but recently one of them broke into two pieces and fell off. My dentist glued it back in place for a temporary fix. I’m so scared it’s going to break off again and it kind of hurts. I am supposed to wait for another five days before they get me back in. This seems like an emergency to me, but I was told it wasn’t since it is cosmetic in nature. Do you think all dentists feel this way? Do you think it best for the veneer to be replaced or should I have a crown done? Also, do you think my tooth will hold another veneer in place?

Thank you,

Cameron in Kentucky

Dear Cameron,

In an office that does a lot of cosmetic dentistry, I think that having a porcelain veneer fall off qualifies as an emergency. There are emergency dentists that will make cases like this top priority even if they are cosmetic.

You can have another porcelain veneer bonded to the same tooth. I would make sure you do consult with a cosmetic dentist that has done a lot of cosmetic work and truly understands the dental bonding technology. It will be important to remove all of the old bonding material to begin with a clean slate. As for a porcelain crown, I think this may not be the best option.

Keep in mind that you do not need to return to the original dentist that placed them originally. There are many great cosmetic dentists that are fully capable of assisting with your dental emergency.

Good luck.

This post was provided by Glibert dentist Vista Dorada Dental.