Dental Emergency

Which Problems Are Considered a Dental Emergency?

Posted on : 20th Nov 2020

Are you suffering from some kind of dental problem? If yes, then your dentist should be the first person you should call to get rid of the pain and discomfort. But what if you face a problem on a weekend, or in the middle of the night? Well, when you have to deal with a severe dental complication outside the office hours, you will probably require an emergency dentist to get yourself treated quickly.

It is important to know the difference between a dental problem that can be solved in the morning and an emergency that can threaten your health condition or cost you a tooth. Read on to know how you can understand dental emergencies and deal with them properly.

How you will know if it is a dental emergency

Every dental problem is not considered to be an emergency. In order to know if you can wait to be visited by a dentist or you may need to go to an emergency dentist, don’t forget to ask yourself these following questions:

  • If you are bleeding or have severe pain, then these are signs of a dental emergency.
  • If you have lost a tooth, then getting treated quickly can save it.
  • If you are having loose teeth, then this is certainly a serious problem even when you do not have any problem.
  • If you are having any infection, then an abscess in the might probably be life-threatening. You might even notice swelling or knots on the gums or swelling around your face.
  • When you bleed from the mouth, this is a possible sign of an emergency.

Any dental problem that requires immediate treatment to lessen the pain, stop the bleeding or save a tooth is said to be an emergency. This is applicable for severe infections that might be life-threatening. So, if you are having any of these symptoms, it means you have a dental emergency. You should call a dentist right away and tell in details what exactly happened. If the dentist’s office is not open, you might visit an emergency dentist for treating your condition.

What is not considered to be a dental emergency

If you can wait with your dental problem till you visit your dentist within a few days, then this is not a dental emergency. Sometimes, problems that may seem to be critical can wait for a day or so when you take proper care of yourself.

For example, a cracked or chipped tooth is an emergency when the fracture is extremely painful or has left sharp fragments that can lead to trauma inside your mouth. If you are having chipped tooth that does not hurt, you can wait for seeing your dentist.

A toothache means you can wait for the dental treatment till the pain is not severe and you do not have symptoms of an abscess like bumps on the gums, swelling of your face or high fever.

If you have lost a filling or crown, you can possibly wait for a few days to visit your dentist. You may stick sugar-free gum temporarily into the cavity after you lose a dental filling. With the lost crown, you may try putting the crown back to its place temporarily having over-the-counter dental cement or denture adhesive.

Common dental emergencies

If you have any of these common dental emergencies, here’s what you should do for taking care of the problem till you see a dentist.

  • Knocked-out tooth – According to the American Association of Endodontists, if you have a knocked-out tooth, then it is quite possible that your dentist can reinsert and preserve the tooth by taking quick action.

You have to pick up the tooth by the crown carefully, see you do not touch the root, and rinse it thoroughly without scrubbing. If you can, try to reinsert the tooth back into the socket. If you can’t, store your tooth in a milk container and visit the dentist soon to improve the chances of saving your tooth.

  • Chipped or cracked tooth – If you are having serious or painful fracture, then you should clean the mouth with hot water and apply a cold compress to on the outside of the face to lessen the swelling. You may take acetaminophen for the pain but do not take a painkiller or numbing gel as it can cause damage to your gums.
  • Abscessed tooth – A dental abscess is a severe condition where a pocket of pus in the tooth can cause an infection. A tooth abscess might be the reason for tooth sensitivity to hot and cold, fever, tender lymph nodes in the neck, persistent toothache, pimple-like bump on your gums near the infected tooth and swelling in your face.

This is said to be a dental emergency as the infection may spread on the surrounding tissues, jaws and other body parts. Thus, before you may go to a dentist, rinse mouth properly by using saltwater several times to ease the pain and draw the pus to the surface.

How you can prevent probable dental emergencies

You can prevent dental emergencies by remaining proactive in the oral hygiene and going for check-ups with the dentist. During the dental visits, he will check for dental crowns, loose fillings, signs of tooth decay, gum disease and infection. If you need to get your tooth extracted during an emergency, it is advised that you follow aftercare instructions carefully to prevent probable risks, such as infection or dry socket.

A customised treatment plan will be prepared to identify your dental concerns before they might develop into an emergency. Also, you need to pay keen attention to what your teeth and body tell by watching the signs that will denote if it is an emergency.

Though a comprehensive dental hygiene routine can keep these circumstances away, dental emergencies might occur at anytime and any place. Thus, if you are handling a dental emergency, take necessary steps on time to prevent further complications till you can actually see your dentist. Visit to book an emergency appointment now.


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