FAQ

I have a broken or chipped tooth. What should I do?

The enamel that covers your teeth is the hardest part of your body. Despite their strength, your teeth may fracture or fall out during extreme circumstances. Tooth decay increases the chances of a broken or chipped tooth.

If you have a chipped, fractured or broken tooth, you may or may not be experiencing discomfort. Even if pain is not present, it is important to see a dentist right away. The internal and delicate areas of the tooth may now be exposed to the bacteria in the mouth. Left unprotected, this could quickly lead to new or increased decay, and ultimately result in loss of tooth or root canal therapy.

If your tooth is knocked out, get the tooth and seek emergency dental care. Teeth can sometimes be implanted after being knocked out; however, time is critical. A permanent tooth that’s been knocked out has the best chance of being re-implanted within 30 minutes of the incident. If you cannot see an emergency dentist, you should visit the ER.

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What insurance companies are you contracted with?

Although we do not contract with any insurance providers, we are able to accept most dental insurance on an indemnity basis. We will check with your insurance company to determine your out-of-pocket cost, and then get the claim started for you.

Because we accept dental insurance on an indemnity basis, you will need to pay for your services before we can begin any dental work. We accept cash, credit or one of our convenient financing options. Your insurance company will then reimburse you within a few weeks.

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Do you have any coupons or discounts?

No, we do not currently offer any coupons, discounts or free dental care. Special offers and promotions may periodically be available at specific locations.

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Are you open on holidays?

Emergency Dental Care USA is one of the few dental clinics to offer holiday dental appointments. Not all offices are open for all holidays, so please call your local office to check hours and availability.

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I can’t afford dental care right now. What should I do?

Dental Care is an important part of your overall health and well-being. Emergency Dental Care USA strives to make our services available to anyone in need. We have several different financing options ranging from zero interest CareCredit plans, to in-house financing which requires no credit check. If you have questions about financing or payment, please contact your local office.

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How much does a root canal cost?

Pricing of root canals (AKA root canal therapy) depends on several factors, including:

  • Which tooth is affected?
    Front teeth are typically much easier to access and work on; therefore work on them will usually cost less. Rear teeth, like molars, are more difficult to access and often require more work.
  • Where do you live?
    Pricing varies at each Emergency Dental Care office. Prices are always based on the average price for dental services in the local area.
  • Is additional restoration required (i.e., crowns, bridges)?
    Teeth requiring root canals often have large cavities or other decay. Additional restoration work is usually recommended to prevent further damage to the fragile tooth.
  • Has there been a root canal performed on the tooth before?
    If the tooth has had a root canal performed on it in the past, it complicates the procedure. This usually means an increase in time and cost of the procedure.
  • Cost of the crown
    Once the root canal is completed, the tooth’s crown must be restored. Like the root canal, pricing of crown restoration depends on the tooth affected.

Call your local office to set up an exam and x-ray to determine how much your root canal will cost.

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What is a “dental emergency”?

A dental emergency is a dental condition usually characterized as pain, swelling or discomfort, and is usually when the patient determines that they cannot help themselves.

It is important to understand that oral health problems seldom fix themselves or go away. If you or a loved one is experiencing a symptom which lead to this website, there is a good chance it is a dental emergency.

You can call your local Emergency Dental Care USA and discuss your condition.

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What does “indemnity basis” mean?

Emergency Dental Care accepts nearly all dental insurance plans on an indemnity basis. This means that we contact your insurance provider to determine your coverage, co-pay and out-of-pocket costs. Since we are not contracted with any specific insurance providers, you pay your co-pay or out-of-pocket cost before we perform any procedures.

If for some reason we cannot contact your insurance company, you can pay for the treatment out-of-pocket, and your insurance company can reimburse you.

The amount covered by insurance can vary depending on the type of treatment and the type of insurance that you have. Our staff will determine your out-of-pocket costs, and if necessary help you secure financing. We will always communicate the total out-of-pocket cost before any treatment begins.

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Is emergency dental care expensive?

No more expensive than most dental offices. The cost of exams, x-rays and treatment are very competitive, and often cheaper than other area dentists. Cost varies by city/region, but all pricing is based on the cost of dental care in the area. This gives our patients the ability to receive high quality dentistry, competitive pricing, and unmatched convenience.

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Do you accept Medicaid (Title 19) or DSHS?

Unfortunately we are not currently a Title XIX (Medicaid) or DSHS provider. We do offer several payment options including credit cards, CareCredit® financing, and no credit check in-house financing. You can learn more on our Financing Page.

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How can I remove an object caught between my teeth?

If you should get a piece of food or any small object wedged between your teeth, first try to gently remove the object with dental floss. Never use anything sharp like a pin around your teeth as it may cut your gums or damage your tooth. If it can’t be removed by dental floss, contact a dentist for advice or to schedule an appointment.

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What happens if I lose a tooth filling?

If you lose a filling, call to get in to a dentist at the soonest available time. In the meanwhile, there are a couple of short-term remedies you can try. Inquire at your pharmacy, and pick up some over-the-counter dental cements available to use as a temporary stop gap.

For an even shorter term remedy, you may also use sugar-free gum to cover the cavity. Be sure it is sugar free gum, because any sugar entering the cavity can cause severe pain.

Cavities left untreated can develop into more serious problems, including loss of the tooth.

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What can I do for toothache relief?

If you’re having continual mouth pain or discomfort, here are some steps to take to resolve the problem, or at least provide some temporary toothache relief until getting to the dentist:

  • Brush and floss your teeth to remove food fragments on and in-between your teeth. Rinse with warm water.
  • You may take aspirin for the pain, but should NOT put an aspirin or any other painkiller directly against the gums near the aching tooth. This can burn and cause damage to the gum tissue. If the pain persists, call to see a dentist as soon as possible.
  • It is important to know that persistent toothache pain may temporarily subside, but will usually return until the underlying problem has been addressed. Failure to treat these problems in a timely manner may lead to further deterioration and more costly treatment.

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Should I go to the ER for a toothache?

Probably not. ER doctors, surgeons, and physicians cannot practice dentistry, and it is extremely rare to find an ER or urgent care center with an emergency dentist on call. In most cases, a visit to the emergency room or an urgent care center will result in a prescription for some painkillers and/or antibiotics. The emergency room staff will tell you to visit a dentist as soon as possible, and then hand you a bill.

In some extreme (yet very rare) cases, a tooth infection can spread and become a very serious health problem. To avoid an unexpected trip to the ER for a toothache, you should see a dentist once you begin to experience pain. Toothaches almost never disappear on their own, so even if the pain is manageable, you should see the dentist before the problem compounds and becomes more painful and expensive to remedy.

If you have experienced trauma to your face or have not yet taken antibiotics, you may want to consider the ER or an urgent care centers. Antibiotics can reduce the swelling, which may be necessary before a dentist can perform any treatment. But you have been warned – it will not be cheap, and it is not a permanent solution!

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Does an emergency dentist cost more?

Not at Emergency Dental Care USA. Unlike some family practices or so-called emergency dentists, we do not have any additional fees or surcharges to be seen on weekends or even holidays. Our offices have the same competitive rates every day.

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What is a root canal?

View our graphical explanation of root canal therapy here.

Many people dread root canals, because they don’t understand what the procedure is, or how much pain is involved. So what is a root canal?

To help you understand, look at teeth as living things. Living teeth have three layers. The outer layer is the enamel, and under that is the dentin. The innermost segment is a chamber and a network of canals in which are nerves and blood vessels. These canals are within the roots of the tooth, which are embedded in the jawbone.

A root canal, or RCT, becomes necessary when the nerves and blood system within the canals of the tooth becomes infected or is damaged by trauma. The most common reason for a root canal is infection – decay enters the tooth and gets into the chamber which contains the blood supply and nerves. Or there’s trauma: you were in a car accident, got hit with a baseball or got into a fight. Sometimes even excessive grinding and clenching of teeth can cause enough trauma, leading to teeth becoming non-vital.

The root canal procedure begins with the dentist removing the infected or traumatized portions of the tooth. The canals and pulp chamber are cleaned with tiny files as well as medicaments to disinfect the area. Root canal therapy on molars can take some time because there are more canals, sometimes difficult to access, and sometimes curved.

Once the canals are completely cleaned, disinfected, and free of infection, the dentist dries them out and fills them with gutta-percha – a rubber like compound.

Finally, a crown or like restoration is usually placed on the tooth to strengthen the tooth.

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Can you help me find an emergency dentist near me?

If there isn’t an Emergency Dental Care USA office in your area, your best bet might be an online search for “emergency dentist” or “urgent care dentist” in the largest city nearby. While the Emergency Dental Care USA offices are unique, most major cities (and some mid-sized cities) have at least one or two dentists who are willing to accept patients after typical business hours. Sometimes services like 1-800 Dentist can connect you with doctors willing to accept emergencies as well.

Those in rural areas may want to try contacting local dentists’ emergency numbers if available. If not, we occasionally have patients drive several hours, sometimes from different states, to relive their dental pain.

View all Emergency Dental Care USA locations

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