Dental emergencies are unpredictable. You can be walking down the sidewalk, on vacation or just having dinner but rest assured our Langley office is always available to help when you need our services. If you have a dental emergency, we'll prioritize your visit to ensure that you receive the treatment that you need as soon as possible. In addition, emergency dentistry allows you peace of mind that your dental emergency won't progress.
Emergencies may include one of the following unexpected issues:
If you have a dental emergency, we'll prioritize your visit to ensure that you receive the treatment that you need as soon as possible. In addition, emergency dentistry allows you peace of mind that your dental emergency doesn't progress.
Waiting to Fix Dental Emergencies Isn't a Great Option
Your teeth should never be the last priority. If you have a dental emergency, don't wait days or weeks to visit the dentist. Broken, chipped or infected teeth must be treated promptly or risk your issues escalating. No one plans for a dental emergency, but do yourself a valuable favor and schedule an appointment with us when one occurs.
When are Dental Issues a True Dental Emergency?
If you think that your tooth-related issue is an emergency, it probably is. We often recommend scheduling an emergency appointment at your earliest convenience. When you call to schedule your appointment, we'll ask you a few questions and determine whether your issue is an emergency. While cosmetic dentistry is not an emergency we can certainly help schedule you in for a routine exam to help address your concerns.
Signs That You May Need our Langley Clinic Emergency Dental Services
We encourage you to visit our Langley dentists office at least twice a year for checkups. We'll schedule your appointment at the end of each checkup to ensure your teeth are examined routinely. The goal is for us to find issues early on before they can progress. For those people with dental anxiety, we always have the option of sedation treatment.
If you skip dental visits, haven't been to our office in quite some time, or experience any of the following, we recommend that you schedule an appointment with us immediately:
When these symptoms also include swelling of the neck or face or have a higher fever, call us immediately. These are signs that you could be experiencing a life threatening dental emergency that must be rectified at once.
What Causes Emergency Dental Issues or Oral Disease?
Everyday, your mouth comes in contact with some form of bacteria. In fact, your natural mouth flora is filled with bacteria that are harmless in small quantities. Of course, you'll also come in contact with fungi and viruses too.
The foods you eat, primarily foods high in sugar, create a breeding environment for acid-producing bacteria. Overtime, if this acidic bacterium persists, it will begin to erode your tooth enamel and lead to cavity formation.
Bacteria can also accumulate near the gums, leaving plaque behind. The plaque starts as a sticky substance and will eventually move down the length of your teeth. The plaque will continue to harden and accumulate if you don't brush your teeth regularly. Brushing and flossing remove this plaque so that it doesn't have a chance to cause gingivitis or inflammation of your gums.
If it's allowed to persist, inflammation will cause the gums to move away from your teeth and pus will eventually form in these open pockets. In the most severe cases, periodontitis will form which could lead to a tooth extraction.
Numerous factors can increase your risk of gum disease, including:
Even if you don't fall into any of the categories above, not brushing and flossing your teeth routinely can cause gum disease. If youbelieve that you have gum disease or want to check for gum disease, we can help diagnose the issue in our dental office.
Diagnosing Oral Disease Emergencies
Our Langley dental team is trained on spotting oral disease, and we can often perform a quick examination to diagnose your condition. We'll inspect your cheeks, throat, teeth, tongue, mouth, and even your jaw for signs of oral or dental disease during your exam. One of our staff will take X-rays to provide us with a clear indication of any dental issues that we couldn't find with the naked eye.
Images of all of your teeth will be taken and examined by the dentist. We do ask that if you're pregnant, you tell us once you enter the office. X-rays should ideally not be performed on pregnant women if possible. We'll also look for signs of periodontitis by examining your gums with a device called a "probe." The probe is a small ruler that is used between the teeth and the gums to measure the pockets between your teeth. Usually, these pockets are 1mm to 3mm in depth. If your pockets are deeper than 3mm, this is a sign that you have gum disease.
Oral cancer is a major concern for older adults and one of the oral conditions that we'll look for during an exam. When examining your mouth, we'll look for growths, lesions or any abnormal lumps in the mouth. If found, we'll either perform or refer you for a gum biopsy, which involves removing a small piece of the growth or lesion for testing.
We'll send the sample of this tissue to a lab to check if it's cancerous. If the test comes back positive, then a medical doctor will run a series of tests to determine whether the cancer has spread, possibly including a
Types of Tooth Problems we See as Dentists
When considering your dental health, it's easy to jump to the conclusion that dental or oral disease is always oral cancer or any issue is major. However, it's just as common for a person to have one dental problem in their lifetime vs having numerous dental issues.
The types of dental problems that one could have include:
Broken or cracked teeth: Injuries, teeth grinding or even chewing hard foods can lead to a cracked or broken tooth. In both scenarios, an emergency dental visit can stop the tooth from further damage before you need a crown or an extraction
Cavities: Over 90% of people will have a cavity during their lifetime. Cavities occur when tooth decay damages the tooth, leaving small holes behind. Plaque builds up on the tooth, destroys the enamel, and can eventually cause permanent tooth damage.
Gingivitis: Gum disease is a topic we covered in-depth already, resulting from poor brushing habits.
Periodontitis: If gum disease is allowed to progress, it will turn into periodontitis and spread to the bones and jaw.
Tooth sensitivity: Dentin hypersensitivity occurs after a filling or root canal is performed and will go away on its own. But if you haven't had a procedure performed, the sensitivity can be a sign of gum disease, cracked or broken tooth, filing issues or even receding gums.
Oral cancer: A form of cancer that is often only spotted by the dentist. Cancer can occur in many areas of the mouth, including the palate, lips, gums, tongue, cheek or even floor of the mouth. Chewing tobacco and smoking both increases your risk of oral cancer.
Poor oral hygiene and health have been linked to numerous health issues. The issues result from inflammation and bacteria, which can lead to heart disease, inflammation of the heart and even infective endocarditis.
Infective endocarditis is life-threatening and is an infection of the heart valves. Immediate medical intervention is necessary to treat this condition.
You're Not Alone: Dental Information
Emergency dental issues are more common than our patients think. For example, gum disease and cavities are typical for 92% of adults. In addition, studies show that 9 out of 10 adults between the ages of 20 and 64 have at least one cavity.
Gum disease impacts 47% of adults. Oral disease does not discriminate, although it is more prevalent in poor communities where dental care is less of a priority. Roughly 30% of people aged 65 and older have lost all of their natural teeth. Proper dental care at our Langley clinic and a proven routine can help stop you from becoming another dental statistic.
We recommend that our patients focus on their dental hygiene as a way to reduce the risk of cavities, gum disease or losing permanent teeth.
How Best to Avoid an Emergency Dental Visit with our Langley Dentist
Our patients at Blue Water Dental often ask how they can prevent a dental emergency. The answer is easy and one that you've likely heard most of your life:
Brush your teeth twice daily, or more
Floss at least once daily
Reduce sugar intake
Avoid tobacco products
Schedule routine dental exams with a dentist
What you do today to protect your teeth will determine the state of your teeth tomorrow. If you continue to brush your teeth regularly and floss, you can prevent cavities and decay .
If you notice that you have a cavity or are experiencing some form of dental pain, it's essential to seek treatment and contact us as soon as possible.