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Emergency Dentistry and the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Disease: When Should I See the Dentist?
Emergency dentistry seeks to treat a range of oral health and dental injury concerns promptly and in an effective manner. While checkup visits and non-emergency procedures are advised against or not allowed during the coronavirus (COVID-19) disease outbreak, patients should still understand what a dental emergency is and know when to see a dentist during this pandemic.
When to seek emergency dentistry during COVID-19
People should see a dentist for emergency dentistry situations during the COVID-19 outbreak. This includes most dental injuries and severe cases of oral health concerns such as oral infections. The following is an overview of when to see a dentist during the COVID-19 outbreak and what constitutes a dental emergency.
Oral health concerns
Perhaps the main reason for emergency dentistry is to receive treatment for severe oral health concerns that show symptoms that are intolerable or have the potential to spread or worsen. Of course, this is a broad term that refers to a range of potential concerns, including but not limited to severe tooth decay, moderate to severe periodontitis and oral infections. These issues along with others can lead to issues such as loose teeth, tooth infections that spread to other parts of the mouth and tooth loss.
Dental trauma typically results in the need for emergency dentistry, even during the COVID-19 outbreak. Dental trauma, or dental injury, can be the result of a range of concerns, including a blow to the mouth during sports and recreational activities, as a result of a fall or from biting down on hard foods. It is important to consider emergency dentistry treatment during COVID-19 if there is any damage to a tooth or multiple teeth, such as chips, cracks, loose or missing teeth.
Many dental practices are now offering teledentistry visits. These allow patients to get the routine dental checkup they need even though they cannot visit the dentist's office during COVID-19. Teledentistry practices are effective in diagnosing patients who have symptoms of an oral health concern and educating them on ways to prevent concerns from developing through good oral hygiene. It is encouraged to ask your dentist if they offer teledentistry visits if you are due for a routine checkup or have symptoms of an oral health concern.
After the COVID-19 lockdown
For those who have good oral health and are not past due for a routine checkup, the dentist may recommend waiting until after the COVID-19 lockdown has been lifted to have a dentist visit. During COVID-19, most dental practices are only treating patients who need emergency dentistry and recommending those who have minor symptoms or are interested in cosmetic procedures to wait until state and federal governments suggest that it is appropriate to open dental practices for elective and non-emergency procedures.
Talk to a dentist about emergency dentistry
If you are in need of emergency dentistry, then get in touch with our dental practice today for more information. We can assist patients who need emergency dentistry during COVID-19 due to a dental injury or a severe oral health concern that has developed over time.
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