Tag Archives: emergency dentist

How Much Dental Work Can be Done at Once?

I will be honest and admit that I have neglected going to the dentist for many years now. However, it has gotten to the point that I need to do something. I can see decay and a couple of broken teeth. I’m sure I need even more work than I think I do. In order to get this over with fairly quickly (you can probably tell dentists aren’t my favorite thing), how much work can be done in one sitting, so I can minimize the appointments?

Kirk

Dear Kirk,

Someone asleep from dental sedation

While each dentist varies from office to office in how much they’ll do at each appointment, you will find the dentists who are willing to do the most in one sitting are sedation dentists. There is a procedure, oral conscious sedation (OCS), that enables both the patient and the dentist to get through more work at a time. Some people have dubbed it sleep dentistry because they are so relaxed they end up sleeping through the entire procedure.

There are many reasons patients avoid the dentist. One of the leading causes is dental anxiety, which can usually be traced back to a traumatic dental appointment. Having a means to experience stress-free and pain-free appointments with OCS has changed many lives.

Avoiding a Dental Emergency

Hopefully, you’ll find a sedation dentist fairly soon. I am especially concerned about the broken and decayed teeth. These can quickly turn into a dental emergency if the pulp of the tooth becomes infected. When you think about how close your jaw is to your heart, lungs, and brain, you can see how a simple tooth infection can turn life-threatening.

People tend to underestimate the seriousness of toothaches, which is why even in the twenty-first century we still have people who die from a tooth infection.

I’m not saying this to frighten you. I just want you to recognize, if the tooth starts to feel pain or if a pimple develops on your gums, both are signs of an infected tooth and you will need to be seen as soon as possible.

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

Is This Crack in my Crown an Emergency?

Hi,

When I got several porcelain crowns placed on my  front teeth, one of them had a defect that the others did not. There has always been this horizontal line towards the bottom of one of my crowns; it’s difficult to see unless you’re looking for it, so it never bothered me before. However, now I can see the fracture line clearly and I can feel it when I run my tongue over it. I’m afraid of it breaking while I’m talking. I’ve had the crowns for over fifteen years, so I’m open to replacing them. Do I need to be seen immediately at an emergency dentist? Or can this wait until my general dentist can see me?

Ross, from Calvin, North Dakota

 

Hi Ross,

This sounds like a cosmetic emergency, but unless you’re in pain or have lost the crown, you don’t necessarily need to see an emergency dentist for this problem. However, instead of going to your general dentist, you should go see a cosmetic dentist. An expert cosmetic dentist can replace the crown. You should try to do this before it breaks completely, because it most likely will in the future. If this happens, you should see an emergency dentist for a temporary crown.

Porcelain crowns often have horizontal “craze” lines, and they are usually undetectable and nothing to worry about. However, since you can now feel the defect, it means your crown has shifted and is in need of replacing.

Depending on the cosmetic dentist you see, they may recommend replacing all of your porcelain crowns due to their age. There is no rush to do this if there are no problems with your crowns. Be aware that it is difficult to color-match a new crown to the older ones unless you go see an expert ceramist.

This blog post is brought to you Gilbert emergency dentist, Dr. Matthew Roper. Please note that cosmetic dentistry is not a specialty recognized by the ADA, but dentists like Dr. Roper have received additional post-graduate training in restorative dentistry, and have the experience to help their patients with their aesthetic concerns.

Is My CEREC Crown Causing My Sensitivity?

Hi,

My dentist recommended a CEREC crown to replace one of my teeth. This tooth has had issues to sensitivity to hot and cold, and I thought getting a crown would solve this problem. My dentist did not think I needed a root canal. However, after getting my CEREC crown, I’m still having a lot of sensitivity and discomfort. My dentist said to wait a month or so my mouth to get used to the crown. In the meantime, I’ve experienced sharp, throbbing jaw pain. I have had to medicate it with pain killers for a few weeks. I’ve had the crown for over a month, but it feels nothing like the other porcelain crowns I have. Am I correct in thinking the CEREC crown the source of my pain?  And what should I do?

Thank you,

Magnus, from Alberta, Canada

 

Hi Magnus,

Your issue is not likely caused by the CEREC crown, but rather the tooth itself. Tooth sensitivity to hot and cold is caused by irritation, and getting a crown can cause more irritation. Other options instead of a crown would include removing any current fillings or decay, and then filled the tooth with a bonding material to create a new core. If the new core did not reduce or eliminate the pain, then an x-ray and root canal may be needed.

CEREC crowns are more likely to fit better than traditional porcelain crowns, as they are milled by a computer based on a digital scan of your mouth. However, any crown you put over a sensitive tooth is unlikely to stop the issue.

When a tooth is infected, it will often feel worse before it feels better. If it suddenly starts to feel better, that means the pulp inside of your tooth has died, and a root canal is needed to clear it out.

Your best option is to get a second opinion about whether you need a root canal. You don’t need to go back to your same dentist who made the crown.

This blog is brought to you by Gilbert CEREC provider, Dr. Matthew Roper, of Vistadorada Dental.

Emergency Dentist Won’t Fix Crown

Several months ago, I had a crown placed. Shortly after, approximately 3-4 months, a portion of the porcelain broke completely off. Not only was I bothered that the piece fell off so soon after the crown was placed, but it has been bothering me ever since. I returned to the dentist a few times for adjustments, but nothing really improved the issue.

I still need to address the problem, but have zero interest in returning to the same dentist. It is causing me pain and discomfort, so I sought out an emergency dentist who saw me quickly. Unfortunately, the dentist would not correct the current crown issues, stating that, instead, it needed to be completely replaced.

A new crown is not in my budget, especially since the crown should not have broken. Do you have any suggestions?

Thanks,
Mike

Dear Mike,

It is understandable that you are frustrated after experiencing these issues. However, it is important to understand that different dentists have different opinions when it comes to treatments and ways to address issues.

You mentioned your crown was broken. It’s possible that there is no way to save the crown and a new one needs placed. If this is the case, it would be good to return to the dentist who originally placed it, to at least attempt treatment, as it would cost less for you.

Dentists have varying opinions on the length of time a treatment should last. For example, a crown should last at least five years. If a repair to the crown is needed, or a crown needs replaced, the dentist should not charge the patient, or at minimum, charge a reduced fee. You should expect that your dentist will stand behind his or her work.

This blog is sponsored by the office of Gilbert emergency dentist, Dr. Matthew Roper.

 

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.

Why Can’t My Dentist Get Me Numb?

I need serious help. At this moment, I’m living off of extremely strong painkillers. My dentist had to send me home with them because he doesn’t know what to do. He tried on five different appointments to get me numb. But, after at least seven shots and some kind of paste on my gums he still couldn’t get me numb enough to do my root canal. What gives? I’m miserable and my dentist feels horrible. He’s even refunded my money.

Scott T.

Dear Scott,

Gilbert Sedation Dentist

What a difficult experience. I’m sure you’re in tons of pain, so I will make this quick. I know exactly what is going on here, because a colleague of mine (and a dentist himself) had the same problem whenever he went in for treatment.

Believe it or not, this dentist suffered from dental anxiety. Between you and me, I think it was frightening for him not to be in charge of the procedure.

What many dentists don’t realize is that dental anxiety and Novocain (along with other numbing medications) are not a good mix. The anxiety ups your metabolism which in turn burns off the numbing agent. The higher the anxiety, the faster it burns it out.

There’s a simple solution. You need dental sedation. You’ll simply take a pill before your appointment which will completely relax you. Be aware that it relaxes you so much, you’ll need someone to drive you to and from your appointment along with someone to stay with you until you’re steady on your feet again.

Whenever a patient with dental fear uses sedation, it enables the numbing medication to do its job. You’ll experience a stress-free, pain-free root canal treatment.

Best of luck to you. Dental emergencies are the worst.
This blog is brought to you by Dr. Matt Roper.

Can’t drink hot chocolate-my tooth hurts

We’ve finally gotten to the cold weather and my tooth hurts like crazy. I can’t even drink my coveted hot chocolate. Is there anything I can do to get rid of this pain?

Sara G. – Utah

Sara,

When your tooth is sensitive to heat, it means the pulp inside your tooth is so inflamed that it is about to die.  This is something that needs treatment fairly quickly.  You’ll need a root canal treatment and a dental crown.

You’ll want to get seen before any infection spreads elsewhere in your body.  Explain to your dentist what is happening. If you’re still haveing trouble getting in quickly, there are dentists that will see you the same day in those situations. Just tell them what is going on and they will fit you in.

Don’t put this off. I want to reiterate that it is important to deal with this before things get worse.

This blog is brought to you by Gilbert, AZ Dentist Dr. Matt Roper.

Emergency Preparation: A knocked out tooth

I’ve been making out a list of emergency prepardness sheets for a workshop I’ve been invited to speak. I thought it would be useful to list one of my sheets.

Dealing With A Knocked Out Tooth

1. Get to the dentist as quickly as possible. It is ideal to get there within the first 30 minutes. If you cannot reach your dentist do a quick Google search for an emergency dentist. However, seeing as we’re making a preparedness chart, it wouldn’t hurt to do a search for emergency dentists ahead of time so you have a list ready.

2. Call the dentist ahead of time so they can be prepared for you when you get there.

3. Carefully remove any dirt from your tooth by holding it by the crown (the top visible part of your tooth) and gently rinse it with water. DO NOT  scrub the tooth. DO NOT  hold the tooth by the root part.

4. Keep the tooth moist. You can do this by holding it between your cheek and gum, or by placing it in a cup of milk.

Now you know what to do with a knocked out tooth.

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