Dental Emergency Protocol

The thing about emergencies, is that they are not convenient. We try to accommodate our patients with whatever emergency needs that may occur, at any time of day! If you are an existing patient of record in either our offices, we do have a phone line available for dental emergencies. Simply call our emergency phone at (574) 453-7300, you will be directed to the voicemail. Please leave a message and clearly state your name, which office you are a patient in, the dentist you usually see, and what dental concerns you are experiencing. The staff member who carries the emergency phone will consult with your dentist to find a solution and get back to you as soon as possible. Please note, this phone is for emergency use only for current patients!

If you are not a current patient in either office and are experiencing a dental emergency that requires immediate attention, we recommend seeing a doctor at the after-hours clinic or emergency room, and then you may call our office for an appointment during our regularly scheduled office hours.

As a reminder, according to Indiana State law, we are unable to call in any prescriptions for pain medications over the telephone. You must schedule an exam appointment within our office for the doctors to prescribe any pain medication.

Solutions to Dental Emergencies

Problem: A crown or temporary crown fell off

Solution: You can find temporary crown cement within the dental products section of a grocery or drug store. Clean any residual cement our of your crown and try it in a couple times to figure out how the crown fits on the tooth. Follow the instructions for the temporary cement that you purchased and cement the crown in place. If it is a permanent crown that fell off, please contact our office at our resumed business hours to have the crown permanently cemented in place.

Problem: A toothache or pain in your gums

Solution: Anti-inflammatories such as Ibuprofen or Tylenol are best for tooth pain. Unless otherwise restricted by your physician, you may take up to 600 mg every 6 hours. Alternate warm and cold compresses every 20 minutes and rinse your mouth with warm saltwater. Contact our office during our regular business hours to schedule an exam with the dentist. If visible swelling is present in your gums, go immediately to the emergency room.

Problem: Broken tooth, but no pain

Solution: Avoid any activities that may cause further trauma to the tooth, such as eating hard, crunchy, or chewy foods. Try to chew foods on the opposite side of the mouth. Contact our office for an appointment within regular business hours.

Problem: Concerns following extractions

Solution: Bleeding is common for several hours following dental surgery. Be sure to regularly change gauze every 20 minutes and bite down with firm pressure. If excessive bleeding still occurs, dampen green or black tea bags and place on extraction sites. Pain following surgery is common; be sure to follow post-operative instructions regarding medication that was prescribed to you in our office. Intense shooting pain is indicative that a dry-socket has formed- a dry socket will not occur immediately, it will usually form 4-7 days following surgery. If you feel a dry socket occurs outside of our regular business hours, call the emergency phone at (574) 453-7300.

Problem: A new denture or partial isn’t fitting correctly or is rubbing on gums

Solution: Dentures may take several adjustment appointments to gain a proper fit following the initial placement. If you feel your new denture or partial is rubbing or uncomfortable in any place do not stop wearing it, unless you are physically unable to wear the partial/denture. We need to determine where to make adjustments to your denture for the proper fit, but we cannot do so if you are not regularly wearing your denture. Call our office during our regular business hours for a quick adjustment appointment.