There’s a reason why it’s called an “emergency.” As far as injuries to the mouth are concerned any incident that results in bleeding from the gums or a dislodged or broken tooth should be considered an emergency. The very word by definition describes a traumatic circumstance that requires urgent attention.

An accidental fall or sports injury are at the top of a list of things that can result in a cracked or broken tooth especially when it comes to the younger members of a family. Risk factors change as children get older. Toddlers who are still pretty unsteady on their feet are more likely to stumble into a table end or trip over a toy. Older kids who like to take part in spontaneous – and unsupervised – football games that often end in injury are at high risk.

Even organized sporting events carry a certain amount of exposure to injury. Athletic coaches and physical education teachers have come to realize the importance of mouthguards for the prevention of serious injury. They are also trained to know just what to do in the event of an incident before the victim can get to a dental facility for treatment.

An adult tooth may be more susceptible to injury if it has undergone extensive restorative measures. Even though the dental work may have been necessary to preserve the tooth at the time the strength of the enamel will undoubtedly have been compromised in the process.

If tooth decay goes untreated it will only get worse and the longer it has to develop the weaker the tooth will become. At some point the infected tooth will simply begin to disintegrate and break off.

Adults are more likely to break a tooth by biting down on a hard piece of food than they are by getting tackled in an impromptu game of football, although the latter can never be ruled out completely!

A broken tooth will require immediate dental attention to determine if the nerve has been affected. If so, root canal therapy is usually recommended and should be done sooner rather than later.

Spokane Valley Dentistry caters to the needs of all family members. Call 509-926-6261 and make an appointment to see Dr. Conway.