Emergency Dental Care
By now, life throwing curveballs at you should be expected. Sometimes, these curveballs can come in the form of dental emergencies. Some of them might just require several deep breaths and chill, while others might call for immediate dental care. The severity of the condition should be what helps you figure out your next move.
Here are some of the dental emergencies that require immediate professional care.
Table of Contents
1. Knocked-out Tooth
Once a tooth has been knocked out, carefully pick it up, ensuring that you only touch the top (crown). See to it that you do not touch the root. After that, rinse the tooth slowly without scrubbing it. You can try reinserting the tooth back into the gum. If this is not possible, take the tooth and place it in a milk container to raise the odds of survival as you wait to get help from the dentist.
When you get to the dentist, they will first numb the gum. If you had reinserted the tooth, they would check whether it is in its correct position by taking an X-ray. After putting it in position or confirming that it is well placed, the dentist will then splint the tooth to ensure that it is firm and in place. Splinting takes two weeks.
In some cases, you might not find the tooth. Several materials can be used to fill this space. They include dentures (a removable false tooth), a bridge (a permanent false tooth), or an implant (a screw (made of titanium) placed in the jaw bone).
2. Abscessed Tooth
An abscessed tooth infection develops from a pus pocket in the tooth. This can cause profound sensitivity to hot and cold, severe toothache, and even fever. Other brutal effects include swelling of the neck’s tender lymph nodes, face swellings, and bumps developing on the gum near the tooth.
Before you contact a dentist, it is recommended that you first rinse the mouth with salt mildly diluted in it. Doing this several times will help you ease the pain while drawing pus nearer to the surface.
When you get to your dentist, their treatment goal will be getting rid of this infection for good. To do so, they may:
- Perform a root canal. This will help save your tooth as well as eliminate the infection. They will drill the tooth and remove the diseased pulp, draining off the abscess. The pulp chamber is then filled and sealed. To make the tooth even stronger (especially for a back tooth), they may cap it with a crown.
- Incise the tooth and drain the abscess. A cut is made into the abscess for the pus to drain out. The area is then washed with saline water. In some cases, a small drain can be attached to keep the cut area open for drainage in case of more pus.
- Remove the tooth. This will be done only if there is no hope of saving it.
3. A Chipped or Cracked Tooth
In case this happens, you are supposed first to clean the mouth with warm water. After that, you can then apply a cold compress on the outside side of the fractured to help reduce the swelling. Do not use numbing products or painkillers since they can cause damage to your gums. Instead, try easing the pain with acetaminophen as you wait to get medical attention.
If possible, try to look for the broken fragment and store it in milk. The dentist might be able to reattach the fragment using a particular type of glue. If you cannot find the fragment, don’t worry. The dentist can be able to use a tooth filling material and build it up. If the back tooth was part of the broken fragment, you might need a cap (also known as a crown).
4. Severe Toothache
You can use several home remedies to relieve pain and inflammatory such as:
- Saltwater rinse
- Hydrogen peroxide rinse
- Cold compress
- Peppermint teabags
- Vanilla extract
The dentist will first administer some pain medication before they examine your tooth. After that, they will explain the tooth problem and its extent, giving you the available options. The tooth might even be extracted.
5. Crown Coming Off
This happens to people who wear a temporary dental crown. As you wait for the medical attention, you can put a little amount of Vaseline on the back part of the crown to serve as a temporary bond as you head to the dentist.
Your dentist will then take it from here. After a comprehensive assessment, they will provide you with a replacement for the crown. If taken care of, the replacement should last for quite a long time.
Dental Medical Insurance
Oral and dental issues do not send application letters before they develop. They can catch you off guard at any time. When this happens, the dental insurance cover will provide you with the coverage you will need and cater to the expenses. This will help you save money and at the same time maintaining a healthy mouth.
Moreover, regular dental checkups help you identify problems as early as possible. They save you from severe damage that may require costlier procedures. Such visits can be covered by most dental plans, some requiring little additional costs.
Top 5 Dental Insurance Providers
Finding comprehensive dental insurance is essential. To get the best one for you, you must first consider your needs. Below is a list of the top dental insurance providers.
1. UnitedHealthOne Dental Insurance
UnitedHealthOne Dental Insurance is an insurance policy whose products are underwritten by the Golden Rule Insurance Company. It is an easy and affordable way to obtain dental cover for you and your family. It caters to minor dental work and preventive dental care. The annual maximum cover ranges from $1000 to $1500. All plans have a $50 deduction. One of its most significant advantages is the fact that it has an extensive network of participating dentists. However, the policy is not available in all states and also does not cover orthodontic care.
2. Delta Dental Insurance
Delta Dental Insurance has been providing its services since 1954. Offering both HMO and PPO plans, the insurance has more than 140,000 participating dentists. All their claims are managed online. Their budget-friendly plans offer PPO discounts and preventive care in all the states and other US territories. Its only disadvantage is that you cannot get all the coverage options in every state.
3. Cigna Dental Insurance
Other than dental insurance, Cigna Dental Insurance also provides life, health, and disability insurances. It has received several positive ratings from popular insurance rating organizations. It even has a mobile application that makes it easy to find dentists near you. Its network providers automatically handle claims, easing off the burden of submitting them. With over 70,000 dentists in the network, the policy covers x rays, dental cleanings, and routine examinations. However, it does not cover as much of the dental costs as other covers do. Also, there is no coverage in several states.
4. Humana Dental Insurance
Humana Dental Insurance has plans purchasable both individually or through your employer’s health care program. You can choose your own dentists, and there is no co-pay whatsoever. It offers PPO and DHMO plans. Its website offers adjustable coverage options and other helpful features. When you get a Humana dental cover, you have the chance to enjoy huge discounts on preventive care and dental procedures. However, not all plans it offers cover orthodontic expenses. The plans are also not available in all the states.
5. Ameritas Dental Insurance
Ameritas Dental Insurance is a branch of one of the oldest insurance companies in the country, Ameritas Life Insurance Companies. Its greatest strength (and the reason why most people consider it) is its excellent customer service. With no enrolment fees, those covered by Ameritas have attractive discounts availed for them. You can even roll over some of the unused coverage to the following policy year. It offers up to a $2000 maximum cover annually. Its dental network provides more than 400,000 access points all countrywide. However, the insurance is not suitable for those in need of just basic coverage. They may be better off with out-of-pocket payments.
Is Dental Insurance Really Worth it?
The worthiness of dental insurance greatly depends on your personal preferences and your financial position. You may not have any access to employer-sponsored dental insurance. If you visit a dentist regularly for small appointments and rarely get additional treatments, then you will be well off without insurance coverage. If you need a lot of work done on your teeth, dental insurance won’t cover so much, and you might end up incurring substantial additional costs.
If your employer provides dental coverage for a few dollar deductions every month, then the cover is probably worth it. Moreover, families that have older members and children should also consider getting a cover. This is because such people tend to need dental work frequently compared to others.
With all these caveats, it might seem like a dilemma whether or not to buy an insurance policy. The best thing to do is evaluate your status and choose the right one for you.