My son still has his wisdom teeth. We haven’t moved forward with the removal procedure for various scheduling reasons. Well, he seems to be having some discomfort lately. I’m sure this isn’t uncommon, but when I took a look back there, I see swelling. It looks like it is right around where the wisdom tooth is starting to break the surface of the gums. Is this a dental emergency? We are planning to talk to the dentist about the extraction at the next appointment in a few months. Does he need to be seen sooner?
– Linda in Nebraska
The condition you are describing sounds like pericoronitis. Although it isn’t necessarily a dental emergency at this point, it could very well turn into one.
Here is an explanation. When the tooth is erupting, the skin breaks and the skin can become an area where food particles become trapped. There may be some noticeable irritation. At this point, gargling with salt water should help. It will also help to remove the debris.
But if you are noticing swelling around the eruption area, it may be cause for concern. It is possible that the area is becoming infected or is already infected. The swelling could be an abscess. If that is the case, you need to schedule an emergency dentist appointment, as soon as possible. Infections can quickly become very serious. Antibiotics will need to be prescribed and it will need to be treated. Don’t mess around with infections. They can spread into other areas of the body and complicate treatment. So to answer your question, yes, this needs to be treated like a dental emergency.
Best case scenario, the situation hasn’t advanced. But it would be in your son’s best interest to be seen right away. Most dentists leave time in their daily schedules to accommodate dental emergencies. Call in today!
This post is sponsored by Cleveland dentist Hylan Dental Care.