This week the New York Times had an article describing the problem with emergency dental patients seeking care at hospital emergency rooms rather than dental offices or clinics. Most emergency room physicians do not have the training or available equipment to accurately diagnose dental pain. The article reports that most emergency room physicians will see at least 10 dental emergencies a week. More often than not they are only able to provide a prescription for pain medication or an antibiotic. This presents a problem because patients that are addicted to pain medication can go to an emergency room and say they have a toothache. The physician has no way to confirm that they actually have a problem and so the patient may be given addictive pain medication unnecessarily to deal with the patient's addiction not to address a real dental problem.
Salt Lake City Dentist Blog
What?!? It's true, but not what you think. There are many sweeteners called sugars. We're talking about the sweetener xylitol. It can be found in many 'sugar-free' gums and candies. It is a natural sugar or sweetener. Table sugar or sucrose is definitely bad for your teeth and when most people think sugar, that's what comes to mind. When the bacteria that live in your mouth are exposed to table sugar, they 'eat' it, and produce acid which makes holes or cavities in your teeth.
Toothaches and abscessed teeth can be nearly impossible to ignore and your best bet is to see an emergency dentist as soon as possible. However, sometimes it can be difficult to make arrangements to be seen right away. So what can you do?
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