The number of people going to the Emergency Department for dental-related issues is on the rise. This rise is contributing to a larger wait time and straining the resources of Emergency Departments. Also, most physicians are not knowledgeable in oral infections and problems, and they need to make room for patients with true medical emergencies. Most hospitals do not have the diagnostic equipment or knowledgeable staff to provide any definitive treatment. At best, a patient may receive an antibiotic, pain medications, and a referral to see a dentist. So the patient leaves the Emergency Room with the original cause of the dental problem left untreated, until it blows up again (and it will).
It is sad to see this trend and know that if the patient had followed through the care prescribed, then a tooth could have had a simple and less expensive treatment. The time wasted sitting in the Emergency Room and the pain experienced is unnecessary. Ultimately, the patient still needs to see the dentist.
Lack of adequate dental insurance should not be a deterrent to taking care of dental needs. Maintenance is the name of the game. By being proactive and on top of dental needs, patients can save money and pain. Oral health is one of the most overlooked necessities that can stop a person in their tracks. The severe and excruciating pain from a major dental problem started out very small, simple to fix, and easy to pay for. Delaying treatment or neglecting to see the dentist on a regular basis leads to more expensive and complex treatment.
The moral of the story is see the dentist regularly and follow through with the treatment plan and talk to the dentist. Explain your situation and/or concerns, the dentist is there to help. Always remember that a small problem is easier and simple to handle than a larger one down the road.
“Never put off for tomorrow, what you can do today.”
― Thomas Jefferson