What to do in a dental emergency

April 1, 2020

In this time of uncertainty, we are adjusting to many changes in routine. One of them is postponing preventive dental care so that dentists can prioritize emergency care. But this does not mean you should put off seeing your dentist for a dental emergency.

For example, in Washington state, the Department of Health asked dentists to postpone all elective and non-essential dental procedures and to prioritize care for dental emergencies. Fortunately, your dental plan covers after-hours or urgent care dental appointments to manage acute tooth pain and manage infections in the mouth.

Dental Emergency Guidelines
In the case of a sudden toothache or a knocked-out tooth, call your dentist first. If possible, you should be seen in your regular dental office, not in an emergency room. Your dentist will be the best judge of what requires immediate attention.

If you have Delta Dental of Washington benefits, view your coverage by signing into MySmile®.

Another option for Washington state residents is Arcora Foundation’s DentistLink referral service

  • If your regular dentist office is closed

  • OR

  • If you don’t yet have a regular dentist

DentistLink can connect you with dental providers in your area who can provide urgent care.

    Here is how DentistLink works:

    Find a Dentist

  • People needing assistance can call or text DentistLink at 844-888-5465.
  • If referral specialists are busy helping others, leave a message and your call will be returned as soon as possible.
  • The referral specialist will ask a few questions related to the user’s age, location and the nature of the dental problem.
  • If the problem needs immediate attention, DentistLink will connect the user to a provider that is open to treat urgent problems.

DentistLink serves everyone, but is especially focused on people who have Apple Health (Medicaid) or do not have insurance.

Learn more about DentistLink at Arcora Foundation.org.