Help When You Need It Most
When something suddenly goes wrong with your teeth, you want it fixed fast! You also want to know that your care is in capable hands. Luckily, our team is available and experienced in handling whatever situation you’re faced with. Dr. Kelly Blair has over a decade of dental expertise saving teeth and restoring them—whichever is needed. She is certified in placing and restoring dental implants and is accredited to sedate patients both orally and intravenously (IV). Basically, she can relieve your pain, help you feel comfortable, and give you back your complete, healthy smile, even if replacement is necessary.
How to Handle Common Emergencies
There are generally two types of dental emergencies: those caused by infections and those caused by accidents or injuries. We can help with both! Whatever your emergency, give our office a call, and we’ll accommodate you as soon as possible. Rest assured that we will provide the care you need to get back to good oral health.
Tooth pain often results from tooth decay that has penetrated to the center of the tooth, where the nerves are. To manage the pain until you can come in to see us, you can use cold compresses on your face and over-the-counter oral pain medication. In many cases, we need to remove the infected portions of the tooth through a root canal in order to save your natural tooth.
Chipped or Broken Tooth
Your teeth aren’t indestructible and can become chipped or broken. When this happens, try to collect as many large pieces of your tooth as possible and bring them with you to our office. We will do our best to salvage your tooth, but if it has suffered significant damage, extraction may be the best option.
If your tooth comes out completely, time becomes precious. Come into our office as soon as you can, preferably within an hour, so that we have the best chance of saving your natural tooth. When you handle the tooth, avoid touching the root and store it in your mouth between your cheek and gums or in milk to keep it moist. Once you’re at our office, we can reposition your tooth and place a splint to help it heal correctly.
Lost Filling or Crown
If you lose a filling or a dental crown, rinse your mouth with warm water to keep the area clean. When you come in, we can place a new filling or a temporary crown while we order a new, custom-made crown.
How to Prevent Dental Emergencies
Some emergencies are not preventable; however, many are. Start by maintaining healthy oral habits at home like brushing twice and flossing once daily. Visiting our office twice a year for dental checkups and cleanings is another crucial way you can avoid unnecessary pain and more extensive treatment down the road. At these appointments, we can catch problems while they are small and easy to treat. Also, when playing sports, especially contact sports, make sure you wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth from injury. Through taking these precautions, you can ensure your dental well-being for the long term.
Understanding the Cost of Dental Emergencies
Because treatment will greatly depend on the type of dental emergency, the cost of treating dental emergencies varies from patient to patient. Our compassionate team is experienced with working with dental insurance and can explain your benefits clearly to you. If you have a dental emergency, you can be certain that we will listen to fully understand your situation and provide more accurate price estimates for treatment.
No Two Dental Emergencies Are Exactly Alike
Your emergency dental visit should actually be relatively inexpensive. During this appointment, Dr. Blair will look closely at your mouth, assess the extent of the damage, and determine which treatments will get your smile back on track. That’s why it’s essentially impossible for us to give you a quote unless we physically see you in the office and understand the details of your emergency.
Common treatments for dental emergencies could include:
- Dental bonding
- Root canal therapy
- Dental crowns
- Tooth extractions
- Gum disease therapy
- And more!
Rest assured that before we go through with any treatment, our team will explain our findings to you in easy-to-understand terms and go over the pricing information.
Save Money by Being Proactive About Your Dental Health
While many dental emergencies are accidents that could not have been avoided, most of them are actually preventable to some degree. Infection, decay, and other damage can worsen over time until they turn into painful, full-blown emergencies. By investing in routine dental checkups and teeth cleanings, we can catch many of these problems early on and treat them before they require expensive emergency procedures.
Another way to save money on dental care is to alert us as soon as you notice a problem, however minor. It’s important to remember that even if you’re concerned about possible costs, said costs tend to increase the longer you wait. For example, getting a hurting tooth looked at right away could mean you only need a dental crown, but if you wait too long, the tooth might have to be extracted and replaced, which can be several times more expensive.
Does Dental Insurance Cover Dental Emergencies?
Fortunately, most dental insurance policies offer some degree of coverage for emergency situations. Some plans fully cover one emergency exam per year. Plus, many services commonly associated with hurting or broken teeth (crowns, root canals, etc.) are partially covered. They tend to be covered at around 50% to 80%, depending on the plan.
Our practice can help you with the dental insurance claims process and ensure you’re making the most of your benefits. We’re in-network with the following PPO plans:
Even if you’re out-of-network with us, the great thing about PPO plans is that you can still visit out-of-network dentists and receive partial coverage. Again, we’ll gladly help you with this process!
Other Options for Making Dental Emergencies Affordable
For patients without dental insurance, or who need additional help funding their care, we offer payment plans through CareCredit, Lending Club, and GreenSky. These companies offer a number of flexible plans that let you split the cost of your treatment into monthly installments. Many of them even have low or no interest for qualified patients!
Emergency Dentistry FAQs
Dr. Blair and our team are always ready to help when you need prompt dental care. However, before you trust as us your go-to source for emergency oral health services, you might want to learn more about emergency dentistry and our approach to it. That is why we have compiled the following list of frequently asked questions, along with their answers. If you do not see the information you were hoping for, you are welcome to contact us so we can personally tell you what you would like to know.
Should I Ever Visit the Hospital Instead of My Dentist for a Dental Emergency?
Dr. Blair has the equipment and skills necessary to address most types of dental emergencies. There are a few situations, however, that call for a visit to the ER instead of our office. For example, if you are bleeding uncontrollably, have swelling that makes it difficult for you to breathe, or have broken facial bones, you should head to the nearest hospital. Later, after you receive initial care, visit Dr. Blair so she can help you get your oral health back on track.
Will I Need a Root Canal?
If one of your teeth has a serious infection or is broken, it is likely that Dr. Blair will recommend root canal therapy. A root canal is better than an extraction because it saves your natural tooth and spares you from the expense of replacing a lost tooth later on. There is no need to be afraid of root canal treatment. Thanks to modern techniques and sedation, you can expect to be very comfortable during your appointment.
Will My Insurance Cover My Emergency Appointment?
You will need to check the specific details of your policy to find out how it applies to emergency care. It is likely to cover at least a portion of the cost of your treatment. However, if you experience a dental emergency before your policy’s waiting period ends, you may be responsible for the entire cost of your procedure. Our team will help you to explore other payment options, including low-interest financing.
How Long Can I Wait for Emergency Dental Care?
Some dental emergencies, such as a knocked-out tooth, require immediate attention. If you get to us within an hour or so, we may be able to splint the tooth back into place. With other dental emergencies, such as a dull toothache or a lost restoration, you might be able to wait a day or two. In the meantime, you will need to be extremely careful to avoid causing further damage to the vulnerable tooth.