What constitutes a dental emergency during COVID-19?
During this COVID-19 outbreak, CDSBC has mandated all dental offices to only treat dental emergencies and that all non-essential and elective dental treatment should be postponed. We are adapting to this situation by limiting the types of care provided, practicing social distancing, and reducing rate of transmission. Everyone needs to do their part to flatten the curve and prevent medical facilities from being overwhelmed.
Dr. Samantha Chien will perform a risk assessment of your specific situation and will use her professional judgement and clinical expertise to determine whether you are in need of emergency care. Our main priority is the safety of our patients and staff during this time of uncertainty and in doing so we are focusing our time and resources on dental emergencies and urgent care as outlined below:
DENTAL EMERGENGIES are potentially life threatening and require immediate treatment. This includes:
- Uncontrolled bleeding
- Uncontrolled pain
- Uncontrolled infection
- Cellulitis – soft tissue bacterial infection that first appears as a red, swollen area that feels hot and tender to the touch. The infection can spread quickly if not treated immediately
- Intra-oral or extra-oral swelling that potentially compromise the patient’s airway
- Trauma involving facial bones, potentially compromising the patient’s airway
URGENT DENTAL CARE focuses on the management of conditions that require immediate attention to relieve severe pain and/or risk of infection and to alleviate the burden on hospital emergency departments. Some examples include:
- Severe dental pain
- Swelling of the gums around a tooth that is partially erupted (commonly seen in wisdom teeth)
- Dry socket: a post operative complication that occurs a few days after tooth extraction. Signs include bad odor, unpleasant taste, severe pain getting worse or radiating, and/or empty space at extraction site.
- Abscess, or localized bacterial infection resulting in localized pain and swelling
- Tooth fracture resulting in pain or causing soft tissue trauma
- Dental Trauma with avulsion (completed displacement of the tooth out of its socket)
- Dental trauma with luxation (dislodgment of the tooth from its normal angulation)
- Dental treatment required prior to critical medical procedures
- Final crown/bridge cementation, if the temporary restoration is lost, broken, or causing gingival irritation
- Extensive decay or defective restoration causing pain
- Suture removal
- Snipping or adjustment of an orthodontic wire or appliance poking or ulcerating soft tissue