Benton & Nelson DDS

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Emergency Dentistry

How can we help you?

You can find answers to some common questions below. Feel free to call us at (336) 760-1277 if you have a question that isn't listed here!

Emergency Dentistry

Yes, we are happy to schedule a same-day emergency visit. 

We will rearrange our schedule so you can be seen on the same day. Call our office at (336) 760-1277 today!

Visit our page on emergency dental treatment to learn more.

Yes, we will see emergency patients who are new to our office. 

We understand how uncomfortable and life-altering dental pain can be. Drs. Benton and Nelson are committed to helping all patients in the Winston-Salem and Piedmont Triad area. We will see all emergencies, even if you are not patients of record at our office. 

Visit our page on emergency dental treatment to learn more.

Yes, most dental issues don’t become painful until they’re severe. 

Cavities don’t hurt until they are large. 

Cavities don't hurt until they reach the deepest part of your tooth (the nerve). However, once they reach the nerve, you might need a root canal instead of a simple filling, which could have been done when the cavity was smaller.

Gum disease doesn’t hurt, either. 

Gum disease typically involves painless destruction of gum and supporting gum structures. Gum disease usually doesn’t hurt until it becomes so severe that your teeth are loose. 

Please visit our page on gum disease to learn more! 


We will give you the best treatment options for your chipped teeth. 

Drs. Benton and Nelson will diagnose the type of chip or fracture and advise you on the best treatment options.

 Possible treatment options of cracked or chipped teeth include:

  • Smoothing of the chip
  • Restoration with a tooth-colored filling or composite
  • Crown
  • Veneer

Root Canal in Winston Salem

The fee for a root canal depends on the tooth that is being treated.  The cost ranges from $800-$1000.  As always, we will work with your dental insurance to get your maximum benefit and offer interest-free payments to ensure you can afford your treatment.  

Emergency Dentistry in Winston Salem

Your dental insurance should cover emergency dental visits and we will work with your insurance to estimate the out-of-pocket cost.  Most emergency dental visits are $106 consisting of an emergency exam ($76) and dental x-ray ($30).  


Jaw pain or TMD (Temporomandibular disorder) can be caused by issues with the jaw bone, disc, or muscles.

Bone-Related TMD

The temporal bone (the socket part) and the mandible (the ball part) can develop degenerative diseases that are very similar to other joints in the body such as the knee.

  • Osteoarthritis: This is a degenerative condition caused by use and wear over time. The cartilage which separates the two bones wears away and causes the bones to rub together. This creates inflammation, pain, damage to the bones, and loss of motion.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis: The outcomes are similar to osteoarthritis, but instead of wear causing the damage, the joint is attacked by your own body's immune system.
  • Post-traumatic osteoarthritis: This can happen rapidly or slowly following a traumatic injury to the lower jaw.

Disc-Related TMD

A normal TMJ joint has a disc of cartilage that separates the two bones of the joint and allows the bones to slide easily against each other. However, the disc can become dislodged, inflamed, or stuck in place.

  • Signs and symptoms of disc-related issues include popping, clicking, lockjaw, and pain when opening and closing your jaw.

Muscle-Related TMD

Each side of your face has 4 main muscles that work together to open and close your jaw. They are the temporalis, masseter, lateral pterygoid and medial pterygoid.

  • These muscles can become inflamed, injured, or damaged. 
  • Muscle pain is often mistaken for pain in the TMJ itself. It is important to properly diagnose the issue to determine the proper treatment.
  • If you have muscle inflammation or damage, opening or closing your mouth can become difficult or painful.
  • Muscle issues can also be mistaken for headaches, especially if the headaches are most severe in the mornings.

TMJ Treatment in Winston Salem

To learn more about TMD/TMJ treatment visit our TMJ Treatment service page.

If you are nervous about your emergency dental needs, you are in the right place.  

Our office specializes in treating nervous patients.  Dr, Nelson has extensive training in sedation dentistry, and can offer services ranging from painless injection techniques, laughing gas, oral sedation, to IV sedation.  


TMD stands for Temporomandibular Disorder. This term encompasses all of the possible issues that can arise with the structures of these joints. These issues fall into three main categories: bone disorders, disc disorders, and muscle disorders. You may have a combination of issues with multiple parts at the same time. 

Are you having a TMJ-related dental emergency? 

We are passionate about helping. Please don’t hesitate to call (336) 760-1277 to schedule an appointment today.

We will see emergency patients who are new to our office. 

We understand how uncomfortable and life-altering TMJ pain can be. Dr. Benton and Dr. Nelson are committed to helping all patients in the Winston-Salem and Piedmont Triad area. We will see all emergencies, even if you are not patients of record at our office. 

We are happy to schedule a same-day emergency TMJ evaluations. 

We will do our best to rearrange our schedule so you can be seen on the same day that you call.

Come to the office ASAP: 

Call our office ASAP and place the tooth or tooth fragments in cold milk.

The sooner, the better: 

Immediate treatment in the dental office improves outcomes and increases the chances of saving the tooth.

Splinting of injured teeth: 

At our office, the teeth will be temporarily splinted (glued) together in a very simple process. This allows your body to heal the injured teeth in the appropriate location.

Temporary replacement of missing teeth: 

If the teeth cannot be saved, then our office will make you a temporary device that can restore your smile until the final treatment can begin.

Temporary or Permanent Crown Fell Out (Debonded)

Save the crown and pieces: 

If your crown falls out, save the crown or crown pieces. Even if they cannot be put back in, they can assist our office in making a temporary crown

Schedule with our Winston-Salem office ASAP: 

Make an appointment as quickly as possible. Teeth can shift in a matter of days which can cause the crown not to fit and require adjustment

We will try to glue your old crown back on: 

Our office will do everything in our power to recement or rebond the crown back on the tooth. This is the best-case scenario as it is quick and cheap. 

If your old crown is not salvageable, we will make a new one. 

Sometimes decay is present underneath the crown or the tooth has fractured underneath the crown. In these cases, Drs. Benton or Nelson will determine if a new crown has to be fabricated or if the tooth is savable. You will be presented with treatment options and will be able to decide the best course of treatment for you with recommendations from Drs. Benton or Nelson.

Occlusal splint (night guard)

The most common treatment to begin with is an occlusal splint. This is a special type of night guard that you wear while sleeping. There are many different types and styles of splints that are designed for different causes of your pain. Once your doctor determines the appropriate type of splint for your issue, then they will take molds of your teeth so our local Winston-Salem dental lab can fabricate a custom splint.

Physical therapy

Many times physical therapy can help alleviate symptoms of TMD. Physical therapy can include stretching, exercise, and massages for the joint.

Occlusal Equilibration (Bite Adjustment)

Sometimes TMD symptoms are exacerbated by your teeth not fitting together appropriately. The doctor can make tiny, precise adjustments to your bite, known as an occlusal equilibration, which can help alleviate symptoms. 

Palliative Care (Preventive or Protective Care)

The doctor will discuss your history of symptoms and determine the best palliative or preventive care regimen for you. This can include stretching exercises, prescription medications (pain relievers, anti-inflammatory, or muscle relaxing medications), and avoidance of certain jaw movements. 

Call us at (336) 760-1277 to schedule your next appointment.
If you have difficulty using our website, please email us or call us at (336) 760-1277
View the ADA Accessibility Statement