Many dental practices across the nation are closing their doors to routine and elective procedures and prioritizing emergency dental care during COVID-19 (coronavirus) after receiving recommendations and guidance from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the American Dental Association (ADA) and the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA). These are all in addition to the closure of all non-essential businesses in the state of Maryland effective March 23rd. While a dental practice is in fact essential, the additional recommendations and guidance from the above-named organizations is a way of ensuring the health and safety of our staff and clients.
On March 16th, the ADA released a statement recommending that dentists across the U.S. postpone any elective procedures and to prioritize emergency dental care during COVID-19. This is in an effort to help flatten the curve. On March 27th, the CDC provided recommendations and guidance to dentists that fall in line with the ADA’s statement. In addition, they’ve provided dental practices with a few other guidelines, reiterating the need for practices to delay any “non-urgent dental procedures, surgeries and visits.” The recommendation is given in order to protect staff and clients as well as preserve personal protective equipment (PPE) and patient care supplies – which are in short supply right now.
What Is a Dental Emergency?
Routinely visiting the dentist to ensure the health of your teeth and gums is essential, but is it an emergency? No. Here are some examples of a dental emergency:
- Knocked-Out Tooth
- Loose Tooth, Tooth Out of Alignment (loose tooth does not apply to children’s baby teeth who are naturally falling out)
- Cracked or Fractured Teeth (A chipped tooth that does not hurt is NOT a dental emergency)
- Tissue Injury and Facial Pain (i.e. puncture wounds, lacerations and tears to the lips, cheeks, mouth and tongue)
That list is not all inclusive. Basically, a dental emergency is a dental problem that requires immediate treatment in order to save the tooth, stop ongoing tissue bleeding or alleviate severe pain. It is important to note that a severe infection or abscess in the mouth can be life-threatening and you should seek immediate care.
Having a temporary crown fall off is not a dental emergency. However, you should attempt to put it back in place. Some make-shift adhesives to use to replace your temporary crown include Vaseline, toothpaste, Chapstick or a small amount of denture adhesive. You should try to see your dentist within a few days to have it re-cemented, if possible.
Should I Go to the Emergency Room for a Dental Emergency?
Many emergency rooms/hospitals do not have a dentist on staff or on call. Emergency room doctors normally can’t do much more for a dental emergency patient than providing antibiotics and/or pain killers – which are only temporary solutions and does not treat the underlying cause. If you’re experiencing a dental emergency, you’ll want to find an experienced emergency dentist in Bowie, Maryland.
Experienced Emergency Dentist in Bowie, Maryland
Dental emergencies can happen at any time, even during a pandemic. If you’re experiencing a dental emergency during COVID-19, you’ll want to call an experienced emergency dentist in Bowie, Maryland to be seen right away. Dr. Adesanya has been providing expert dental care in Bowie and surrounding areas for over a decade and is ready to help during this turbulent time. To speak with Dr. Adesanya in regards to your dental emergency, please call 301-785-2159.