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There are many different causes of toothaches. If you are in severe pain, you may be wondering whether you are in need of emergency dental care or whether you should schedule an appointment with your regular dentist.
In this article we will list common reasons for emergency tooth extractions. If you believe that you are in need of an urgent dental appointment, call an emergency dentist in your area.
The dental office should be able to inform you of whether your case is an emergency and advise you on your treatment options and whether you should make an appointment for the same day or next day.
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The most common reasons for emergency tooth extractions are:
Accidents and injuries are prevalent causes of emergency dental problems. Sports injuries, car, motorcycle and bicycle accidents, biting down on hard foods, and falls can cause dental trauma. These injuries often result in minor problems such as chipped or cracked teeth. However, more serious trauma, especially if it causes a serious amount of pain, may necessitate an emergency tooth extraction.
Your dentist will take an x-ray of the affected area and make a decision based on the condition and location of the tooth and its surrounding area. They may try other treatment options to save your tooth, but if the fracture is quite severe or there is an infection in the area, it’s likely they will perform an emergency tooth extraction.
Infections are another common cause of emergency oral health procedures. They occur when bacteria make their way inside the tooth (dental abscess) or gum tissue. Common causes of dental infections include:
Symptoms of oral infections include:
Decay is caused by untreated plaque and tartar buildup on your teeth. It causes the crown, or top of the tooth, to demineralize and break down, creating a hole. This makes the tooth soft and porous and allows bacteria, food, and liquids to enter the tooth and cause pain. Tooth decay may present as brown or black spots, however, sometimes it is only visible via x-rays.
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, you may be in need of emergency dental care, and should contact help immediately:
There are three types of emergency tooth extractions:
While the procedure will vary depending on the condition and location of the affected teeth, your overall health, and the oral surgeon’s practice, most emergency tooth extractions will follow the same steps:
The cost of an emergency tooth extraction will vary depending on the location of the tooth, type of tooth extraction, location of your dentist, and your dental insurance plan. Typical costs are:
|Type of Extraction||Cost (per tooth)|
|Simple Extraction||$130 to $250|
|Surgical Extraction||$250 to $370|
|Wisdom Tooth Extraction||$300 to $500|
AAOMS. “Tooth Extraction: Simple vs. Surgical Tooth Removal.” AAOMS Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, June 2019, www.myoms.org/what-we-do/extractions-and-other-oral-surgeries/simple-vs-surgical-extraction/.
ADA. “ADA Guide to Extractions – Tooth and Remnants.” America's Leading Advocate for Oral Health, American Dental Association, 1 June 2019, www.ada.org/en/~/media/ADA/Publications/Files/CDT_ADAGuidetoExtractions_ToothandRemnants.
Akinbami, Babatunde O., and Thikan Godspower. “Dry Socket: Incidence, Clinical Features, and Predisposing Factors.” International Journal of Dentistry, 2 June 2014, doi:10.1155/2014/796102.
Al-Khateeb, Taiseer Hussain, and Amir Alnahar. “Pain Experience After Simple Tooth Extraction.” Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, vol. 66, no. 5, 2008, pp. 911–917., doi:10.1016/j.joms.2007.12.008.
Friedlich, Joseph, and Nick Blanas. “Management of Post-Surgical Pain.” JCDA, Canadian Dental Association, 18 Dec. 2013, jcda.ca/article/d91.
Johnson, Jordan. “Tooth Extraction: A Few Simple Guidelines.” PatientSmart Patient Education Center, American Dental Association, 2013, www.ada.org/~/media/ADA/Publications/Files/ADA_PatientSmart_Extraction.pdf?la=en.
Erazo, David, and David R. Whetstone. “Dental Infections.” StatPearls, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 3 Oct. 2020, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK542165/.