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When Dental Emergencies Strike: Tips for Responding Quickly and Effectively

A lot of us Don't know what to do when we have a dental emergency

Dentist in the midst of a dental emergency

Most of the time, everyone knows what to do in case of a medical emergency, but what about in case of a dental emergency? Like any other emergency, you must seek immediate care and book a same-day appointment with your dentist. Treating your dental emergency as soon as possible enhances the likelihood of a successful outcome.

Signs of a Dental Emergency

Still, not every dental situation should be considered an emergency. You may be able to determine whether you can hold off until your next dental appointment or if you require emergency dental care by asking yourself the following questions:

Are you in severe pain? Severe pain and bleeding are signs of an emergency.

Have you lost a tooth? Fast treatment can potentially save a tooth.

Do you have loose teeth? Adults should never lose teeth. A loose tooth, even without pain, is a serious problem.

Do you have an infection? An abscess or serious infection in your mouth can be potentially life-threatening, and treatment should not wait.

Are you bleeding from the mouth? That is a potential sign of an emergency.

Generally, any dental problem that needs immediate treatment to stop bleeding, alleviate severe pain, or save a tooth is considered an emergency. The same principle applies to life-threatening and severe infections.

We have put together a list of the most typical dental emergencies we treat and what to do until you can visit your dentist if you're still unclear about what qualifies as a dental emergency.


The following are not considered dental emergencies; however, we still want you to call our office as soon as possible for an appointment:

  • Chipped tooth or composite
  • A broken tooth or filling out without pain
  • Crown or bridge off or loose
  • A temporary crown or bridge off
  • A broken denture or partial
  • Broken mouth guard or night guard
  • Food lodged between teeth
  • Dull toothache or sensitivity

What should I do in an emergency?

If you experience an injury to your mouth, start by stopping any bleeding with your gauze.

Try to locate any missing teeth (or tooth fragments). If you find it, clean it off, then try to reinstall it in the socket. Bite down gently to keep it in place. If you cannot put it back into the socket, put it in your lidded container submerged in milk. Preserving the tooth or the piece of the tooth as outlined here will give you a better chance of saving it.

Take a pain reliever if you suffer pain or swelling (for a recommended dose, read the instructions on the bottle carefully).To reduce the swelling, place your ice pack on the affected region. Call our office as soon as you feel secure and at ease, and we'll make time in our schedule to meet you. It is best if you can receive emergency dental care as soon as possible.