Millersville (410) 987-8800 Directions Video Tour
Greenbelt (301) 474-4144 Directions Video Tour

A Conversation with Your Emergency Dentist in Millersville, Maryland

December 22, 2016 in Dental Emergencies by mccarl_dental

If you or a loved one has ever experienced a dental emergency, you know how stressful, painful, and frightening it can be. Many dental offices are only available to help their patients during preplanned, scheduled appointments, but at McCarl Dental Group, we’re here whenever our patients need us most. As Dr. Clayton McCarl outlines in this video, we provide cell phone numbers for our patients, and are available to talk whenever patients need us most. Whether you’re experiencing complications from an advanced dentistry procedure or you chipped your tooth the night before a special event, our team will be happy to help. Contact us right away, and we’ll do our utmost to provide same day dental treatments.

The Emergency Dentist Greenbelt Turns to for Cracked or Broken Teeth

July 30, 2015 in Dental Emergencies,Dentistry by mccarl_dental

Severley Broken Teeth Requiring RC & Crown from McCarl Dental group the emergency dentist greenbelt trustsCracked or broken teeth are more than uncomfortable, they can be painful, unsightly and detrimental to oral health. Yet, many patients choose to live with cracked or broken teeth rather than seeking immediate treatment. If you have a cracked or broken tooth, don’t postpone your dental care. The skilled dentist Greenbelt turns to, McCarl Dental Group, can see you quickly (on the same day in most cases) and will work to retain your natural tooth whenever possible. Call our Greenbelt or Millersville, MD offices to find out more today.

Causes of Cracked or Broken Teeth

Many patients use the terms cracked and broken tooth interchangeably, but there is a difference. Cracked teeth are still whole, but there is a crack in the enamel and/or dentin tooth layers. Whereas broken teeth actually have a piece or pieces that have broken off. However, the same types of dental trauma can lead to both cracked and broken teeth. Common causes of cracked and broken teeth include:

  • Biting into a hard object
  • Trauma (fall, car accident, being hit)
  • Tooth decay weakening the enamel
  • Sports related injuries
  • Deteriorated seal between tooth and fillings, inlays, onlays or crowns

Cracked or Broken Tooth Repair

Cracked teeth can often be repaired with a filling, onlay or crown, but most patients don’t become aware that their tooth is cracked until it breaks, decays or causes irritation and sensitivity in the pulp. A cracked tooth can easily be broken during chewing or talking as teeth grind together. Additionally, bacteria entering the crack are unlikely to be removed by routine brushing and flossing making the affected tooth susceptible to decay, and finally, as the crack breaks through the enamel and inner dentine layer of tooth it begins to cause irritation to the soft, pulp layer that contains the nerves. Eventually, this becomes extremely painful and can lead to root canal infection.

There are three main types of cracks: fractured cusps, split teeth, and vertical root fractures. Each is treated differently. In all cases, the fractured part of the tooth will likely need to be removed. A small tooth fracture can be repaired with a bonded filling. A larger fracture needs a crown or onlay.

In the case of split teeth, at least one root is usually able to be retained, and the remainder of the tooth is replaced with a crown. Root canal therapy is necessary before restoration in a split tooth in order to remove infection or inflammation when the crack reaches the pulp. Unfortunately, vertical root fractures usually result in the tooth being extracted. These cracks run through the center of the root and compromise the strength of the rest of the tooth making it very difficult to preserve the structure. We have numerous tooth replacement options at McCarl Dental Group that will restore your smile after tooth loss including dental crown and bridge, dental implants, full and partial dentures.

Broken teeth are repaired similarly to cracked teeth. Once the fractured portion of a cracked tooth is removed, it essentially becomes a broken tooth. Bonded fillings can repair small breaks in teeth. Crowns are needed for larger breaks. Root canal therapy is required for even more extensive broken teeth and extraction for teeth that are broken through the foundation of the root.

Call the Dentist Millersville Loves – McCarl Dental Group

Our dental care practitioners are here to help patients when dental disaster strikes. Whatever the cause of your cracked or broken tooth, we can stop the pain and help get your beautiful smile back. Call to schedule an emergency restorative dentistry appointment today. Our Millersville and Greenbelt dental practices welcome patients from local communities including Annapolis, Crofton, Glen Burnie, Bowie, Laurel, Glen Dale, University Park, and Hyattsville.

Your Emergency Dentist for a Tooth Abscess

July 20, 2015 in Dental Emergencies,Dentistry,Root Canals by mccarl_dental

blog photo

If you’ve ever had an abscessed tooth, you know that waiting until Monday at 9 am isn’t an option. An abscess can strike with little to no warning, and the pain can start as a mild heat and cold sensitivity and develop into severe pain within hours. Physicians realized long ago that Monday through Friday from 9 am to 5 pm wasn’t the only time patients needed medical attention. Emergency rooms exist when you have a new pain, when your doctor’s office is closed, but there are no emergency dentist offices. At McCarl Dental Group, we’ve decided to change that. Our emergency dental care is available when you need us. No matter what your dental emergency, call McCarl Dental Group.

Tooth Abscess Causes

Infection in the root of a tooth or between the gums and teeth can cause an abscess or painful toothache that is caused by spreading infection. This can happen if a tooth is decayed, broken, or if a patient has severe gingivitis (periodontal/gum disease) which allows bacteria to enter the soft center of the tooth or pulp, and cause severe pain. If a tooth is abscessed, infection continues to spread, and surrounding gum tissue and supporting bone structure can become infected.

Tooth Abscess Symptoms

Abscessed teeth can cause a toothache, swelling, pus around the tooth or gum, fever, muscle aches, swollen glands, and general nausea or queasiness. Occasionally, a minor toothache especially when chewing and sensitivity to heat or cold is the main symptom of an abscessed tooth. Sometimes, patients do not recognize these symptoms are related to their teeth.

The more severe and abscess becomes the harder it is to ignore. Patients who experience swelling of the gums or jaw, bitter taste in the mouth, bad breath, or draining sores on the gums are much more likely to realize they have an abscess tooth. However, once the infection reaches this point, it is more difficult to treat. If you have recently had tooth decay (cavities), trauma to your tooth (even if you didn’t believe damage was done), or gum disease, don’t hesitate to contact us, if you experience any of these symptoms.

Emergency Treatment

It is important to contact your dentist as soon as you have dental pain. When you seek treatment for an abscessed tooth, there are a number of things we can do to help you feel better quickly. The first priority for dental treatment for an abscessed tooth is to drain the abscess or pus surrounding the tooth. We will likely prescribe antibiotics to help your body fight the infection, and prevent any further infection. Sometimes the patient will need to start antibiotics before the dentist drains the abscess.

Once you contact our on-call dentist, we will work with you to develop a treatment plan. During the treatment planning process, our dentists take digital x-rays and intra-oral photographs and project them on a large television monitor so our patients can see the damaged tooth very clearly.

Our goal is to preserve the tooth whenever possible. An x-ray will help us determine the extent of the infection. If the abscess appears to be only in the gums, it is possible a minor incision may be enough. However, most abscesses are much deeper, in the pulp of the tooth. Root canal therapy to extract the infected pulp, may be the next step. If a root canal is the best treatment option, our team will remove the infected pulp from your tooth. The tooth is filled with gutta-percha (a gum-like substance), and sealed. The tooth may then need to be restored or strengthened with a crown.

In some cases, the tooth may need to be extracted. This is a mutual decision between the patient and dentist. When an extraction is necessary, a dental implant restored with a crown feels and functions like a normal healthy tooth.

Call for Emergency Dental Care

If you have severe tooth pain, nausea, or fever you believe are related to an abscessed tooth, don’t wait until Monday to get help. Call McCarl Dental Group’s on-call dentist. McCarl Dental Group offers same day emergency care during regular business hours as well as evenings and weekends.

If you’re in need of a dentist for any of your oral health care needs, schedule an appointment today.

Our knowledgeable staff is available at either of our two convenient locations Millersville or Greenbelt, MD.

Tooth Abscess Dental Emergency

July 6, 2015 in Dental Emergencies by mccarl_dental

Dental infections and abscessed teeth are a leading reason for emergency dental treatment.

Tooth Abscess Before Dental Treatment

Tooth Abscess Before Dental Treatment

A tooth abscess is a painful and serious dental emergency. An abscess is a pus producing bacterial infection that causes pain and swelling that needs immediate attention. The infection occurs in or around the root of a tooth that contains blood vessels, nerves and connective tissue, also called in the dental pulp. The abscess can also occur between the gum and a tooth. Tooth abscesses are most commonly caused by advanced tooth decay which may originate from a chipped or broken tooth that becomes infected, worn enamel that allows bacteria to enter the tooth or untreated dental cavity. Gum disease also called gingivitis or in advanced stages periodontal disease, can also cause and abscess. In very serious cases, the infection spreads from the root of the tooth to the bones in the jaw supporting the tooth.

The dentists at McCarl Dental Group take care of patients with dental emergencies every day. Last week in our Greenbelt and Millersville Maryland dental offices, we provided same day emergency dental care to patients with pain from dental infections from the following cities: Annapolis 21401, Severn 21144, Crownsville 21032, Glen Burnie 21060, Riverdale Park 20737, Lanham Seabrook, MD 20706 and Bowie 20715. Almost all of these patients who needed emergency treatment were new to our dental practice. We were happy to help!

Symptoms of an Abscessed Tooth

  • A severe toothache or tooth pain with dull pressure, aching, throbbing pain or sharp pain
  • Fever
  • Pain with or without chewing
  • Redness and swelling of the gums and in advanced infections, swelling of the jaw
  • Sensitivity of the teeth to temperature – hot or cold
  • An open, draining sore in the gums that may also cause a bitter taste in the mouth
  • Bad breath

Treatment of an Abscessed Tooth

Drain the abscess – The most effective way to treat an abscessed or infected tooth is to establish drainage of the infection. A small incision into the abscess will help the pus drain out. The dentist may also debride and irrigate or wash the area of infection with saline. Debridement is removal of dead or necrotic tissue that will never heal.

Antibiotic therapy – It is not always easy or possible to drain the abscess. A serious dental infection can “neutralize” the effects of local anesthetics making it very difficult to numb the patient for treatment. Infected lower molars are especially difficult to numb in the presence of a serious infection. In these cases a patient needs to be placed on an appropriate antibiotic to reduce the infection so that the local anesthetics can be effective for comfortable treatment.

Root canal – A root canal is a dental procedure to remove the nerve, arteries and vein in the center of the tooth root. In an infected tooth, a root canal can help drain the abscess. When the infection heals, the tooth is restored with a crown to increase the strength and preserve the tooth.

Extraction – If the infected tooth can’t be saved, it will be extracted to drain the abscess and promote healing of the infection.

If there is increased swelling or fever despite antibiotic therapy, the dental patient may need to be seen in a hospital setting. Contact your Dentist for a referral to an Oral Surgeon with hospital privileges to treat you. Don’t get “lost in a hospital emergency room” that may not have expertise with dental emergencies.

If you have dental discomfort that has become painful with selling, you may have an abscess. See your dentist immediately and start appropriate treatment. Although rare, dental abscesses can cause the loss of life.


Why Does My Tooth Hurt After Drinking Hot or Cold Beverages?

June 30, 2015 in Dental Emergencies,General dentistry by mccarl_dental

Hot or cold beverages can make your teeth sensitive.This is a question we are asked all the time, and we believe there is never a good time to avoid the drinks you love.  In the summer, there is nothing better than an ice cold beverage during an Orioles or Nationals game or after a sail on the Chesapeake Bay.  In the winter, a hot drink can warm the soul.

Accordingly, let us shed some light on what might be causing this tooth sensitivity.  To start, know you are not alone.  Unfortunately, there are more than a million people across Maryland every year who avoid hot and cold drinks because of tooth sensitivity.  While most of these cases are resolved with education and proven homecare protocols, an estimated 280,000 each year require a root canal to solve the problem.

If you are one of the millions with tooth sensitivity, your next step depends on the severity and frequency of the pain.

Less than 15 Seconds of Sensitivity

If pain or discomfort lasts only for a few seconds after drinking a hot or cold beverage, the problem is unlikely to be serious.  In these cases, the sensitivity is likely the result of minor decay, a loose or lost filling or minor gum recession.  It makes sense to schedule a visit to your dentist as soon as possible, but it does not require emergency dental care.  You may need a cavity repaired, and it is likely you will be asked to improve your at-home care.  Brushing in a vertical pattern with a soft bristle toothbrush is a start.  Electronic toothbrushes can also be very beneficial.  Fluoride toothpastes that help reduce sensitivity are another option, and flossing regularly will make a positive difference.

Sensitivity that Lasts 30 Seconds or More

In these cases, you have likely suffered permanent damage to the internal structure (pulp) of your tooth.  This could have been caused by deep decay, a tooth fracture, an accident or trauma, or it could be the result of a serious infection.  In either case, it is best to get a dental appointment scheduled immediately for thorough evaluation – before the pain becomes constant and unbearable.  Even if the pain eventually subsides, a deep filling or root canal may be needed to remove the tooth decay or infection and to help avoid further damage.

What is a Root Canal?

In popular culture, root canals have gotten a bum rap.  In reality, they are relatively quick, economical and painless procedures.  Plain and simple, a root canal is a procedure through which a dentist removes the damaged nerve in your tooth, disinfects the surrounding tooth structure and reseals the area with an artificial filler material.  Surveys by the American Association of Endodontists show more than 90% of people reporting positive results from root canals, and the reasons are obvious.  You arrive at the dental office in pain.  Less than an hour later (in most cases), you are walking out the door with a smile on your face.

Grab the Hot & Cold Drinks

At the end of the day, we hope this helps you find a practical answer to your question.  If minor sensitivity is keeping you away from enjoying hot and cold beverages, your body is telling you something.  Listen.  It is giving you an early warning signal that your teeth need some attention.  It is telling you to give your dentist a call and to take care of the problem before it becomes severe.


Severna Park Dental Emergency

June 29, 2015 in Dental Emergencies by mccarl_dental
Dental Emergency - Broken Tooth

Dental Emergency – Broken Tooth










Nothing ruins a person’s day like snapping off a front tooth at the gum line.  This Severna Park, Maryland resident called McCarl Dental Group at Shipley’s Choice when he broke his front tooth. Dental emergencies can happen anytime and our dentists do their best to make emergency dental care available as soon as possible. This patient was eating popcorn and bit an unpopped kernel. Although the patient was not in pain, he was embarrassed about his missing tooth.

Dr. Jay saw the patient within an hour, performed a root canal, inserted a post and core, and then cemented the original porcelain crown back in place. The patients smile was restored.

The patient commented that Dr. Jay McCarl is a very gentle, kind and exceptionally competent dentist.

Here are photos of the dental emergency. There are several steps for a root canal, post and core and re-attachment of a porcelain crown.

Rubber Dam

Rubber Dam








After discussing options with the dental patient, Dr Jay explained the dental procedure and placed a rubber dam.  Each tooth has a circulatory system. When a healthy tooth breaks at the gum, a root canal is necessary to prevent pain and infection. During the  root canal procedure, the dentist removes the nerve, artery and vein from the center of the root of the tooth. The nerve, artery and vein are also called the pulp of the tooth. Root canal dental instruments are very small and the rubber dam helps prevent them from falling into the patient’s mouth. The rubber dam also helps prevent contamination of the root canal.


Post and Core Dental Procedure

Post and Core Dental Procedure







The canal in the root of the tooth that is prepared by the dentist is also where the post is placed during the post and core procedure. The post and core procedure is necessary to anchor the dental crown. A dental post is a ceramic or metal cylindrical rod that is inserted into the root space of the tooth. The restored root of the tooth is prepared with a series of endodontic files to make room for the dental post. There is no discomfort or dental pain during this procedure because the nerve of the tooth has been removed. The core in a post and core dental procedure refers to a foundation around the post that the dentist builds to help with retention of the crown.

This picture shows the crown anchored in place with the dental post and core before the dentist removed the extra length of the post.

Crown Anchored with Dental Post  after Root Canal

Crown Anchored with Dental Post after Root Canal







After the post and core, the dentist cemented the crown, removed the excess length of the post and polished the tooth. The dental patient was comfortable and delighted with his restored smile.

Severna Park Dental Patient Pain Free after Same Day Dental Emergency Care

Severna Park Dental Patient Pain Free after Same Day Dental Emergency Care



Common Causes of a Toothache from the Dentist Greenbelt, MD Trusts

June 13, 2015 in Dental Emergencies,Dentistry by mccarl_dental

Broken tooth needing a crown after having a toothache and getting treatment from the dentist greenbelt trustsMany people assume that their teeth only hurt if they have a cavity, but there are numerous reasons why your tooth becomes sensitive, and each requires unique treatment. At McCarl Dental Group, we are dedicated to patient education, and we encourage you to know the various types of tooth pain, their causes, and symptoms. Most people know that tooth decay or a cavity causes a dull ache especially while chewing or drinking. However, there are several other common causes of toothache including tooth abscess, bruxism, cracked tooth syndrome, and misaligned bite. The good news is, no matter what your dental health concern, McCarl Dental Group is here to help Millersville and Greenbelt, MD patients feel better fast. If you have a toothache, we will try to see you the day you call or the next day because we are dedicated to providing excellent emergency dental care when you need it. Call either of our convenient locations to schedule an appointment today.

Dental Emergencies

May 15, 2015 in Dental Emergencies by mccarl_dental

broken tooth needing a crownDental Emergencies happen when we least expect them. At McCarl Dental Group, we treat patients who need emergency dental treatment every day. Pain, swelling, broken teeth and a lost veneer or crown are typical dental emergencies, but anything is possible. In some cases, you may be on vacation or unable to make it into the office when an emergency arises. Even if you are not in the area, do not hesitate to call your dentist at McCarl Dental Group. We can offer dental advice and let you know if your dental emergency needs immediate treatment or if it can wait until you return home. If you need to be seen immediately, we may be able to help you find a dentist near you.

We’re here to help. Below are a few short-term remedies you can try before receiving emergency help.

Lost crown or veneer: Sometimes a crown or veneer becomes loose. If your crown or veneer has popped out, please DO NOT swallow or lose the tooth. Be sure to store it in a safe place and schedule a dental appointment as soon as possible.

Not sure what to do? Here are a few short term solutions to get you through a social event until you can get into the dental office. If a crown or veneer is loose do not go to sleep with it in your mouth!

  • See if you can align the crown and “snap” it back into place. Veneers usually do not snap into place securely.
  • If the crown or veneer is not secure, use Vaseline or a denture adhesive like Poligrip or Fixodent as a temporary measure.
  • If you are not able to confidently secure the crown or veneer, place it in a clear plastic bag or clean medicine vial (don’t use a paper towel, napkin or tissue – these get accidently thrown away).

Broken tooth: If cold air or water causes pain, or if you feel sharp edges on a tooth, you may have a broken tooth. Do not try to chew with the damaged tooth – a crack can spread and turn a small dental problem into a large one. Call our Greenbelt or Millersville MD dental offices and schedule an emergency dental appointment as soon as possible.

  • If the tooth hurts, take an over the counter pain reliever.
  • Eat soft foods and avoid chewing with the broken tooth.
  • Wax or gum can cover a sharp edge temporarily to protect your tongue.

Trauma to permanent tooth: It is normal for children to lose baby teeth. If an adult tooth is knocked-out.  Gently the pick the tooth up. Try not to touch the root of the tooth. If the tooth is dirty, do not use soap – gently rinse it in water or milk and try to replace the tooth in the socket without using force. The sooner the tooth is replaced the greater the chances that it will survive. If your gums have swollen and you cannot put the tooth back into its socket, keep it moist either by carrying the tooth in cool milk in a baggie or Tupperware container. Call and schedule an appointment with our emergency dentists. We do our best to treat traumatic dental injuries the same day they happen.

Emergency Dentist Open Today

April 21, 2015 in Dental Emergencies,Dentistry by mccarl_dental

Tooth and first aid kit
Have a Dental Emergency? For your convenience, our dental offices in Greenbelt and Millersville Maryland offer evening office hours and our Greenbelt dental office is open on Saturdays. We offer same-day emergency dental care every day. When our dental office is closed, our dentists are on-call. The personal phone numbers of all of our dentists are listed on our office recording for you to contact your dentist if you have a dental emergency after hours.

If you break an arm on Friday night, you don’t craft a sling and wait until Monday morning to call your doctor. You go to the emergency room. At McCarl Dental Group your comfort and care are always our first priority, and that means being available for dental emergencies when you need us. You wouldn’t wait to see your physician to treat a broken arm, and you shouldn’t wait for a broken, lost, or abscessed tooth. McCarl Dental Group is your emergency dentist open today. Call our on-call emergency dentist whenever dental disaster strikes.

Dental Disaster

You may have grown up watching your parents and grandparents putting in their dentures every morning, but that doesn’t have to be you. Advances in dentistry and increasing commitment to restorative dentistry, have significantly decreased the need for dentures. If you’re over 40, it’s essential that you treat your teeth with care, especially when dental disaster strikes. At McCarl Dental Group, we want you to have healthy teeth for life. That’s why we’re available to help solve your dental emergency.

Increasing Dental Concerns after 40

You use your teeth every day for chewing, biting and talking. Your jaw is in motion and your teeth continually come in contact with foods, beverages and other teeth. Some people even use their teeth as tools to bite fingernails, tear plastic and remove lids. Do not use your teeth as tools!  We are hard enough on our teeth! While they are made to handle normal pressure, over time, they begin to wear down and become more susceptible to many dental health problems.

Over time your tooth enamel wears down and can crack, exposing the dentin. Some people have cavity resistant tooth enamel, nobody has cavity resistant dentin! Clenching or grinding your teeth, also called bruxism, causes increased wear on your tooth enamel, during the day and even as you sleep. Bruxism puts you at greater risk for tooth decay, cracked or broken teeth and abscesses of the tooth or gums.

Additionally, recent studies showed that 75% of Americans over the age of 40 suffer from some form of periodontal (gum) disease. Many patients don’t realize they have gum disease until it’s too late. Although untreated tooth decay is a significant cause of missing teeth, in patients over 40, gum disease is actually the leading cause of tooth loss.

Emergency Dentistry for Patients Over 40

Any dental emergency is important, and McCarl Dental Group is committed to providing convenient emergency dental care for every patient. As we age, it becomes increasingly important to seek dental restoration as soon as possible.

After 40, your teeth are more likely to sustain increased damage due to weakening of the enamel. Even if you don’t see much damage on the surface of your teeth, a dental examination can prevent future dental problems. Some cracks in your teeth are not be visible without dental x-rays. As bacteria work their way into these cracks, damage can progress, causing an infection or abscess that requires root canal therapy or even removal of the tooth. Whatever your dental care, emergency or age, our on call dentist nearby is here to help you. If you’re over 40, receiving care for a dental emergency within hours rather than days can help you to keep your smile for life.

Find Out More

Whatever your dental emergency and whenever it happens, we’re here to help, and our patients agree. Check out the emergency dentistry gallery for stories from patients we were able to help. Don’t wait to get help for your dental emergency. Call McCarl Dental Group and get help when you need it.

Our knowledgeable staff is available at either of our two convenient locations Millersville or Greenbelt, MD. We also conveniently serve patients from Severna Park, Crownsville, Gambrills, Annapolis, Crofton, Glen Burnie and Severn.

8601 Veterans Hwy, Suite 101, Millersville, MD 21108 USA
Dr. Clayton McCarl, Jr. Millersville, MD cosmetic, restorative, & preventive dentistry.
28 Ridge Road, Greenbelt, MD 20770 USA
Dr. Clayton McCarl, Jr. Greenbelt, MD cosmetic, restorative, & preventive dentistry. (301) 474-4144