Emergency Dentist — Portland, OR
Saving Smiles and Taking Away Pain
No one likes to have a dental problem, and everyone wants them resolved ASAP. That is why we reserve time especially for those situations when treatment just can't wait. And you need not fear. At Advanced Dental Arts NW, we have decades of caring for emergencies, from broken or chipped teeth to more involved situations, and we know how important it is to alleviate your pain, right away. Once the pain is resolved, we are happy to discuss ways in which to avoid any future episodes, which is something we all want to do. Because no one should have to live with pain for one minute longer. ADANW: Here for you, in your time of need. So don’t hesitate to give us a call!
Why Choose Advanced Dental Arts NW for Emergency Dental Care?
- #1 Compassionate Dental Team with Years of Experience
- #2 Same-Day Appointments Available for Emergency Patients
- #3 Patients of All Ages Welcome
What to Do in a Dental Emergency
Dental emergencies are naturally alarming and overwhelming, but we encourage you to keep a level head and follow these steps:
- Step 1: Call our office right away. As soon as you can, give our office a call. We can almost always see emergency patients for a same-day emergency appointment. Additionally, one of our team members will walk you through how to manage your situation over the phone.
- Step 2: Visit Dr. Teasdale for an exam. When you arrive, your Portland emergency dentist Dr. Teasdale will see you right away. He will focus on understanding your emergency and alleviating any serious pain you may be in.
- Step 4: Make a treatment plan. After your examination, Dr. Teasdale will fully explain which treatment(s) he recommends moving forward with, including their pros, cons, estimated length, and estimated cost. Together, you’ll create a custom treatment plan.
- Step 5: Get the emergency care you need. Whether you need a filling, root canal, TMJ therapy, or something else entirely, our team is ready to jump into action and get your oral health back on track.
The Most Common Dental Emergencies
Before you do anything, make sure to stay calm and assess the situation. In nearly every case, you’ll need to call us right away so that we can get you on the schedule as soon as possible. This phone call will also allow us to provide specific guidance for dealing with the emergency until you come in. Below are just some of the potential situations you may face and how to respond to increase the likelihood of successful treatment.
Understanding the Cost of Dental Emergencies
The list of potential dental emergencies is endless, and so are the ways that we can treat these situations. Therefore, the cost associated with treatment will vary from patient to patient. No matter what condition you arrive in, we’ll do what we can to alleviate your pain and get your smile back to full health and function. Our caring team members are happy to talk about ways that you can make treatment more affordable and fit comfortably into your budget.
Every Dental Emergency is Unique
The primary factor that will influence the cost of your emergency treatment is which procedures are needed to fully address your problem. For example, fixing a cavity with a small filling is relatively inexpensive and quick. However, if a tooth is severely broken or infected, we may need to remove and eventually replace it, which will require a higher investment when it comes to money and time. Once our team is able to evaluate you, we’ll be able to go over your care options and discuss the associated costs of each so you know exactly what to expect.
Does Dental Insurance Cover Dental Emergencies?
Fortunately, most dental insurance plans do offer coverage for emergency care. Many plans are willing to pay for at least one emergency exam each year, and procedures commonly used to help hurting teeth (like fillings, crowns, root canal therapy, etc.) may be covered 50-80% as well depending on the specifics of your policy. Of course, this is just speaking generally, so your plan might work very differently compared to this. Plus, it’s important to remember that dental insurance plans tend to have yearly maximums, deductibles, and copays that can affect your out-of-pocket costs as well.
Our team can quickly go over your insurance benefits and explain them to you if necessary, and we can even file your claim for you to guarantee you get the most out of your coverage.
Other Options for Making Dental Emergencies Affordable
If you don’t have dental insurance, don’t worry—we won’t make you pay for your emergency dentistry all at once. Patients can instead space out the cost using CareCredit financing, a third-party financier partnered with our practice and thousands of others around the country. It allows patients to break up the cost of their treatment into smaller, easier-to-manage monthly chunks with little to no interest. There is a wide variety of plans to choose from, and none of them include any surprise fees, upfront costs, or prepayment charges. You can look at the different plans and even sign up for one through our website by clicking here .
How Taking Care of Your Smile Can Stop Dental Emergencies
Some dental emergencies simply can’t be avoided, like a surprise fall or chipped tooth while eating, but many stem from a small problem being ignored long enough that it has turned into a serious one. For example, a cavity causes little to no pain at first, but after a few months without treatment, it can turn into a significant toothache. This is not only painful physically, but financially as well, as the cost of treating a cavity too late is much more compared to addressing it early or simply preventing it in the first place.
And thankfully, stopping most emergencies before they start is relatively simple. In addition to brushing and flossing at home, coming to ADANW allows our team to closely examine your mouth and find the early signs of problems so we can fix them before they cause any pain or damage. This proactive approach will not only benefit your oral health, but your wallet as well. That’s because the cost of a routine checkup and cleaning (with or without insurance) is always less compared to a filling, crown, or any other treatment needed to repair a damaged tooth.
How to Prevent Dental Emergencies
Sometimes, dental emergencies can happen no matter what precautions you take. However, many can be avoided, especially if you do the following:
- Wear a mouthguard when you play sports or participate in potentially dangerous activities, such as skateboarding.
- Brush at least twice daily and floss once.
- Visit Dr. Teasdale for checkups and cleanings twice every year.
- Avoid using your teeth as a tool to open packaging or bottles.
- Don’t chew on hard things including ice, pencils or pens, fingernails, etc.
Visit Your Dentist Regularly
Whenever you come in for your checkup and cleaning, this gives our team the chance to spot the early signs of problems and take care of them before they can turn into emergencies later. Minor cavities can be repaired or even reversed if discovered soon enough, and if you have a crown or tooth that is about to crack, your checkup enables us to intervene so it doesn’t turn into a painful toothache at 3 AM. Generally, most people are OK visiting their dentist twice a year, but some may benefit from more frequent appointments (like those who struggle with gum disease).
Maintain Good Oral Hygiene at Home
The two main pillars of high-quality oral hygiene are daily brushing and flossing. While most people do the first part, they often don’t do it in the most effective way possible. According to the American Dental Association, a person should brush their teeth at least twice a day for two minutes each . If you don’t use an electric toothbrush with a timer, be sure to set one, because two minutes is likely longer than you think! This can help prevent dental emergencies in Portland from ever developing.
Flossing might seem like something “extra,” but without it, you actually leave about 40% of your teeth’s surfaces unclean. In addition to increasing your risk for interproximal (i.e. between teeth) cavities and gum disease, skipping flossing can also contribute to bad breath. Similar to brushing, your chances of getting a terrible toothache or suffering tooth loss go way down if you floss regularly.
Stick to a Nutritious Diet
There is A LOT of information out there about what you should eat, and despite this, most medical professionals agree that an essential part of a nutritious diet is largely avoiding processed foods that contain a lot of added sugar. Items like candy, cookies, and most sauces have a lot of fuel for bad oral bacteria that help them create cavities and infections, which are the underlying causes of many emergencies. Fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean meats should make up the bulk of your diet, and this will not only keep your teeth healthy, but your entire body as well!
Wear a Mouthguard
Sometimes the best advice is the simplest: if you regularly play sports, you should always wear a mouthguard when hitting the field, mat, or court. This makes sense when it comes to contact sports, but you should also wear one for non-contact games, because an errant baseball or basketball to the face can lead to cracked and broken teeth all the same. What’s important is that each person wears a custom guard made by a dentist, as this will offer the most protection and comfort, meaning it will actually be used!
Dental Emergency Frequently Asked Questions
If you’re in the middle of a dental emergency, your mind is probably filled with questions. Our team is more than ready to answer them, and below, you’ll find our responses to some of the most common emergency-related questions we receive. Be sure to look over them, and don’t hesitate to contact us to learn more or schedule an appointment.
Can I just wait for my toothache to go away?
Toothaches generally do not go away on their own and in fact tend to get worse without treatment. Waiting to seek out care for your toothache will not only result in you experiencing more pain for longer, but it can also allow the underlying source of the problem to become worse. This may lead to additional issues and will likely require you to get more extensive (and costly) care. In all cases, it’s best to come see us right away as soon as you notice any persistent tooth pain.
What are some tips for sleeping with a toothache?
If you need to wait until the next day to come see us for any reason, here are a few ways to make sleeping with a toothache a little easier:
- Prop up some pillows so you sleep in a slightly inclined position. This will help lessen the swelling around your tooth that may be contributing to the pain.
- Take ibuprofen/Advil about 30 minutes to an hour before you intend to go to sleep, as this will reduce oral inflammation.
- You can also place an ice pack on your mouth before bedtime to slightly numb your mouth.
- In a pinch, you can apply a used tea bag, clove oil, or a small amount of vanilla extract to your tooth and gums to lessen the pain as well.
It’s after hours…should I just go to the ER?
For dental emergencies, it is typically not a good idea to go to the ER or an urgent care clinic because they won’t have the right personnel or equipment to solve the problem. At most, they may give you pain medication and antibiotics if they believe you have an infection, in which case, you’ll still need to go to the dentist, but now you’ll have a hefty ER bill.
Contacting our office and waiting to see a dentist is usually the best approach for your health and wallet. However, if the injury is causing persistent bleeding that hasn’t stopped after 10 minutes, you believe that the jaw may be broken, or swelling is starting to interfere with someone’s ability to breathe, then you should definitely head straight to your local ER.
My toothache went away. Does that mean I’m fine?
Unfortunately, just because a toothache seems to magically disappear does not mean that you’re out of the woods. It may just be a temporary abatement of pain, or in some cases, this may indicate that the internal nerve tissue has died. In either instance, waiting can allow an infection to spread from the tooth to the nearby gums and bone and start to damage them. Even if your toothache goes away, you should schedule an appointment so we can take a look at it and ensure you won’t develop other problems.