Increase in Atlanta ER Visits for Dental Problems
Hospital emergency rooms and Atlanta dental malpractice lawyers across the country are reporting an increase in the number of patients coming in for emergency dental treatment. According to new research, the number of emergency room visits across the country increased approximately 16% between 2006 and 2009.
The data comes from a report titled “A Costly Dental Destination” by the Pew Center on the States. According to the report, the country is in the middle of a major dental crisis, with more than 130 million Americans currently without any form of dental insurance. The report is meant to spotlight the lack of access to dental care for many people around the country.
According to the report, many patients are not able to access dental treatment, and therefore, neglect dental care. These patients are much more likely to go to a hospital emergency with dental problems that could have been avoided if they had made regular visits to the dentist.
However, the large number of patients now visiting hospital emergency rooms for dental problems has increased the strain on an already-stressed health care system. According to the report, going to the emergency room for dental problem costs approximately 10 times as much as preventive care in a dentist’s office.
Besides, your dentist can offer you a wider range of treatment options, compared to your hospital ER. Most hospital emergency rooms do not offer any dental treatment. The maximum that any hospital emergency room staff can do for a patient, who comes in with a dental problem, is to give him painkillers or antibiotics, and send him home. Because many of these patients do not have access to dentists, they do not receive follow-up care. As a result, many of them find themselves back in the hospital emergency room with another dental problem.
Many dental malpractice patients report going to the emergency room seeking treatment for pain that results from the initial act of dental negligence. Once at home and the local anesthesia wears off, the pain from dental negligence can be overwhelming and a trip to the ER is necessary to relieve the pain. I also commonly see dental malpractice patients who report to the ER seeking treatment for a broken jaw following an extraction attempt by a general dentist. If the dentist is not skilled, attempting a complicated extraction (one in which the tooth is ankylosed into the jawbone or one in which bone must be re-sected in order to pull the tooth) can lead to a broken jaw, which goes undetected at the dentist’s office, but which become intolerable when the local anesthesia wears off.
Attorney Robert J. Fleming has been handling wrongful death cases, automobile accident cases, personal injury cases, dental malpractice and medical malpractice lawsuits for individuals and families who have been harmed, injured or died as a result of the carelessness or negligence of another for more than 20 years in and around Atlanta, Georgia and its surrounding areas, including Alpharetta, Austell, Avondale Estates, Chamblee, College Park, Conyers, Duluth, Decatur, Doraville, Hapeville, Johns Creek, Jonesboro, Lawrenceville, Norcross, Peachtree City, Riverdale, Roswell, Sandy Springs, Stone Mountain, and Smyrna. If you have been seriously injured and would like quality legal representation, contact Robert J. Fleming directly on (404) 525-5150 or contact us online.