Be Prepared With An Emergency Dentist

Let’s face it, emergencies happen and when they do, it’s nice to be as prepared as possible for them. Dental emergencies seem to happen at the worst possible times, such as the weekends or after office hours or holidays, which is why it’s important to ensure you have a dentist that can respond to your emergencies.

There are a few steps you can take to help you be prepared for any dental emergency. First, you need to recognize what is an actual dental emergency and what can wait until a next day appointment. If waiting will cause permanent damage or if you are in pain that cannot be handled with over the counter pain medication, you should call your dentist and schedule an emergency visit. If you have any doubts, call your dentist and explain what is going on and ask if your dental issue constitutes an emergency.

Not every dental problem is an emergency, for example a broken tooth that can be replaced in the socket and saved is a real emergency because time is of the essence to save the tooth. A crumbling or decaying tooth that finally breaks or a dental filling falling out is a problem, but can probably wait for a next day appointment if one is available. These issues, while they definitely need to be treated, won’t become any worse with a day or two of waiting as long as you keep your mouth clean and maintain your oral health habits.

The next step is an important one and that is to have an emergency dentist to call when you need one. This step means establishing yourself with a dentist before you have an emergency. Ideally you don’t want to thumb through the yellow pages when you are having an emergency to find a dentist that can accommodate you. Being an established patient will pay for itself when you need to have emergency care. Your dentist will already be familiar with you and you will know what to expect from them.

Finally you should understand the emergency dental protocol your dentist uses. Ask before you need the care and are still in the early days of looking for a dentist what the emergency protocol for the office is. Will your insurance cover the added fees for an after hours emergency? Or will you need to be prepared to pay for it yourself?

Your emergency can fall into several categories and you may be charged differently for each type depending on your dentist. For example you can have a dental emergency during regular office hours or you may need care after established office hours or on the weekend or holiday when the practice is closed. Does your dentist charge a higher rate for emergency care regardless of the time or day it occurs and if so how much?

Be prepared for a dental emergency by following these steps ahead of time and your next dental emergency won’t be cause to break the bank.