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Tips to Handle a Dental Emergency

A white tooth next to a red first aid kit to indicate a dental emergency

Dental emergencies are often stressful situations and it can be difficult to know the best way to handle them. Fortunately, CarolinasDentist is your local emergency dentist. Our team is here to help your family with any tooth, gum, or mouth-related emergency.

Stay Calm at Home

There are often steps patients can take before they head to one of our offices for a dental emergency. Should you or a loved one knock out an adult tooth, for example, carefully pick the tooth up by the crown and rinse it off if possible before either reinserting it into the socket or putting it in a glass of milk. Patients with severe dental bleeding should hold a piece of clean cloth or gauze over the source of the bleeding for at least 15 minutes to try to slow or stop the bleeding. If a large object is wedged between the teeth, try to use a piece of floss to carefully dislodge the object if it’s not too painful.

Call Your Emergency Dentist at CarolinasDentist!

It’s best to turn to a dental professional in your time of need than to search the internet or post on your social media for advice. So if you’re not sure what to do next or you know you need to make an appointment to see an emergency dentist, please give your nearest CarolinasDentist location a call. Calling ahead allows our team to walk you through how to handle your emergency, as well as prepare for your arrival so we can offer immediate treatment upon your arrival.

Take Preventive Measures

Keeping a first aid kit handy, even a basic one, can be very helpful for both dental and medical emergencies. In addition to over-the-counter pain relievers, we recommend always having gauze around for possible injuries. Many people already have salt in their kitchens, which can be used to create warm saltwater rinses that can cleanse the mouth. Cold compresses can reduce oral pain and swelling. Finally, we recommend that every patient visit our office on a regular basis so that any developing dental issues can be diagnosed and treated early on before they advance into full-blown dental emergencies.

If you need emergency dentistry or have any questions about your oral health, please contact CarolinasDentist today!

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gabrielle

Gabrielle Smallwood

Senior Regional Director

Gabrielle, a seasoned professional, began her journey with CarolinasDentist in 2015 as the Practice Manager for the Fayetteville location. Swiftly showcasing her passion for growth and effective leadership, she transformed her Fayetteville team into the largest and most profitable practice in the CarolinasDentist network, earning her a spot on the CarolinasDentist Leadership Team in 2018.

Her impact extended behind the scenes, where Gabrielle played a pivotal role in facilitating CarolinasDentist's partnership with Lightwave. Recognizing her contributions, she was promoted in 2020 to Regional Director of Operations for Lightwave and Integrator for CarolinasDentist. A firm believer in the EOS Operating Platform, Gabrielle exemplifies her commitment to streamlined operations which helped her earn her promotion to Senior Regional Director of Operations.

Originally from Western Pennsylvania, Gabrielle is a proud graduate of Slippery Rock University, holding a degree in Health Services Administration. She brings a wealth of leadership experience from multi-location medical and dental practices. Her dedication to continuous improvement is evident in her enthusiasm for professional development and executive coaching.

Now based in Raleigh, NC, with her husband Nathan, Gabrielle shares her home with her two furry companions, Teddy and Peach, who are likely familiar faces on her Teams calls. Outside work, she loves getting lost in books and finds joy in diving into DIY projects, effortlessly merging her love for stories with hands-on creativity. With a book in one hand and a toolbox in the other, she brings literature and craftsmanship together in her own unique way.

lourdes

Lourdes Sisk

Marketing Director

Lourdes's journey in the professional landscape has been a rich tapestry woven through multiple industries. With over 20 years of experience, she has honed her skills across different sectors, gaining invaluable insights that enrich her strategic approach to marketing. At the core of Lourdes's leadership style is her ability to blend creativity with analytical prowess. This versatility allows her to approach challenges with a holistic perspective, ensuring that every aspect of the business is considered in the pursuit of strategic goals. Customer satisfaction lies at the heart of Lourdes's philosophy. Her customer-centric approach permeates every aspect of the marketing strategies she crafts, ensuring that our efforts resonate with our audience and create lasting connections. Lourdes embodies an entrepreneurial spirit that fuels innovation and drives growth.

Beyond the boardroom, Lourdes is a music enthusiast who finds inspiration in the rhythm and melodies that surround her. Her love for music reflects her creative spirit and adds a unique dimension to her leadership style. Lourdes cherishes her role as a loving spouse and a pet parent to three fur babies. Her commitment to family values extends beyond the workplace, fostering a culture of care and compassion among the team.

Lourdes is far more than our Director of Marketing; she is a multifaceted leader whose journey, skills, and passions converge to create a unique and powerful force within our organization. Her customer-centric approach, entrepreneurial spirit, and love for both her work and personal life make her an inspiring leader, shaping the future of marketing at CarolinasDentist.

Lauren

Lauren Collins

Hygiene Director

In 2018, Lauren Collins, originally from sunny Santa Rosa, California, happily joined the CarolinasDentist team in Raeford after graduating with a dental hygiene degree from Fayetteville Technical Community College. Lauren's positive energy and dedication to oral health quickly propelled her into the role of Hygiene Lead for the Raeford office in 2019.

Riding on the wave of her infectious enthusiasm, Lauren went on to apply for and secure the position of Hygiene Director in 2021. In this role, she supports and mentors all hygienists across CarolinasDentist, creating a workplace filled with positivity and professional growth.

Beyond her professional pursuits, Lauren’s life is enriched by her love for animals. Currently sharing her home with two dogs and three cats, she exemplifies her caring nature not only in her career but also in her personal life. An outdoor enthusiast, she finds joy in kayaking and soaking up the beauty of nature. Lauren's lively personality shines in her social life, where laughter and shared references from The Office are always on the agenda.

Engaged to be married, Lauren cherishes the moments spent with her fiancé, laying the foundation for a future brimming with love and shared adventures. Lauren Collins symbolizes a fulfilling professional journey where her love for healthcare effortlessly merges with her love of caring for people. Her appreciation for life's simple and delightful moments adds a layer of joy to her overall career experience.

Sam

Sam Cernosek

Revenue Cycle Manager

Samantha Cernosek, a native Texan and proud alumna of Texas Tech University, moved to North Carolina in 2015. Her professional journey with CarolinasDentist began in May of 2016 and quickly led to a passion for the intricacies of dental insurance.

Her expertise lies in navigating the complexities of the dental revenue cycle, ensuring optimal financial performance for the practices. With an acute understanding of industry nuances, Samantha has implemented strategic financial solutions, enhancing revenue streams and contributing significantly to the practices’ growth and stability.

Outside of her professional endeavors, Samantha enjoys a variety of fitness activities, particularly cycling and self-defense with a focus on Krav Maga. In addition, she is an animal enthusiast, caring for three dogs of her own and actively contributing her time to volunteer at local rescues.

Paulina Franco

Area Manager

In 2017, Paulina Franco Gil earned her degree as Chemical Engineer from the University of Antioquia. The Colombian native who found her heart divided between the vibrant valley of Medellin, Colombia, and the rolling landscapes of North Carolina moved to the US in 2018, where she not only found a new home but also the love of her life. Paulina embarked on a journey of resilience and adaptability being a proud military wife.

Joining CarolinasDentist in 2021 as a Treatment Coordinator in the Raeford location, Paulina swiftly climbed the professional ladder. Within a year, she transitioned from Treatment Coordinator to Assistant Practice Manager and was promoted to Practice Manager. Another year unfolded, and the opportunity to serve as the Area Manager for the Sandhills region knocked on her door.

Paulina’s passion extends beyond the office walls. She thrives on helping others grow and achieve their goals. When she is not immersed in the world of dental management, she is fostering an active lifestyle. Paulina enjoys going to the gym and loves outdoor activities, whether it's soaking up the sun at the beach, conquering mountain trails on a bike, or skiing down snow-covered slopes during winter.

While Paulina’s heart is firmly rooted in Colombian traditions, her spirit embraces a global perspective. Traveling is her way of expanding horizons, and sampling international cuisine. Paulina lives by the philosophy that energy is neither created nor destroyed; it simply changes form. That means you!

Bonnie Heath

Bonnie Heath

Regional Director of Operations

Born in Missouri and raised near Baltimore, Maryland, Bonnie embarked on a journey that led to a fulfilling career in the dental field. Achieving an associate's degree from Carroll Community College laid the foundation for Bonnie's professional pursuits.

Initially entering the veterinary field, Bonnie transitioned to dentistry, drawn by a keen interest in dental hygiene and inspired by her mother, a seasoned dental assistant of over 25 years. However, upon entering the dental field, Bonnie discovered that her true passion lay not in the intricacies of a patient's mouth but in the gratification of helping patients and the joy of training and mentoring others.

In 2019, Bonnie joined CarolinasDentist, taking on the role of managing the Porters Neck location. As time progressed, Bonnie expanded her responsibilities to support the Wilmington and Triangle regions, showcasing leadership and dedication to the dental community.

Beyond the professional realm, she finds joy and balance in her personal life. She and her husband, Chase, have two dogs, who are more like children. Bonnie unwinds by playing beach volleyball, indulging in reading, and immersing herself in the world of music.