Patients who require dental emergency care for pain or trauma may not be able to see a dental practitioner for treatment. The patients often seek care in alternative medical facilities when the symptoms are too severe to be managed by over-thecounter medications. Nurses, physicians, and allied medical staff may be required to triage these patients and provide palliative treatment until the patient is able to seek definitive dental treatment. By using criteria to assess the etiology of the dental pain and implementing possible alternative treatments, these patients can receive palliative care until dental treatment becomes accessible. With the potential for development of resistant forms of microorganisms, the indiscriminate use of antibiotics for dental pain is to be avoided. Occasionally, dental patients presenting to medical settings exhibit symptoms and signs of dental-related problems that are potentially life threatening. Identification of signs of impending life-threatening complications is of paramount importance, since prompt treatment will significantly affect the prognosis.

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