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7 Common Dental Emergencies and How to Handle Them

June 20, 2023

Welcome to our dental emergency guide! No one ever plans for a dental emergency, but they happen more often than you might think. From toothaches to knocked-out teeth – these can be painful and stressful situations that require immediate attention. So, whether you’re dealing with a chipped tooth or an abscessed tooth, it’s important to know what steps to take to minimize the damage and alleviate the pain. In this post, we’ll cover seven common dental emergencies and provide you with tips on how to handle them like a pro!

What Is A Dental Emergency?

A dental emergency is any situation that requires immediate attention from a dentist to save your tooth, relieve severe pain, or stop excessive bleeding. Dental emergencies can occur due to various reasons such as accidents, injuries, infections, or sudden onset of symptoms.

Toothaches are one of the most common types of dental emergencies. They can be caused by cavities, gum disease or even grinding teeth at night. If you experience throbbing pain in your teeth that lasts for more than a day, it’s important to seek medical help immediately.

Another type of dental emergency is when you knock out a tooth completely. This can happen during sports activities or accidents and requires prompt action to increase the chances of saving the tooth. In such cases keep the tooth moist by placing it in milk or water until you see a dentist.

Broken and chipped teeth are also considered dental emergencies because they expose sensitive nerves and make eating difficult. Depending on how severe the damage is dentists may need to perform fillings, root canal treatments, or even use crowns.

A dental emergency should never be ignored as it could lead to further complications if left untreated for too long. Always remember – prevention is better than cure! Regular check-ups with your dentist will reduce the risk of experiencing an unexpected oral health issue!

Common Dental Emergencies

Dental emergencies can happen to anyone, at any time. Knowing how to handle these situations can make a big difference in the outcome of your dental health. Here are some common dental emergencies:


Toothache is one of the most common dental emergencies that can occur at any time. It can range from mild to severe pain, and it's important to seek treatment as soon as possible.

The most common cause of toothaches is tooth decay, which occurs when bacteria in your mouth produce acids that eat away at your teeth. Other causes include gum disease, an abscessed tooth, a cracked or broken tooth, or even grinding your teeth.

Knocked-Out Tooth

One of the most alarming dental emergencies is having a knocked-out tooth. It's an emergency that requires immediate action since there's a chance to save the tooth if you act quickly and appropriately.

If your tooth has been knocked out, pick it up by its crown, avoid touching the roots, and rinse it carefully with water or milk. Don't scrub or remove any tissue attached to it either.

Broken or Chipped Tooth

A broken or chipped tooth can be a painful and alarming dental emergency. This type of injury can occur due to various reasons, such as biting into something hard, falling, or getting hit in the mouth.

When you have a broken or chipped tooth, it is essential to see your dentist as soon as possible. Ignoring this problem may lead to further damage and infection if left untreated.

Lost Filling

A lost filling is a common dental emergency that occurs when a filling falls out of the tooth. This can happen due to decay, trauma to the tooth, or normal wear and tear over time.

If you lose a filling, it's important to see your dentist as soon as possible. In the meantime, there are some steps you can take to manage any pain or discomfort until you can get professional help.

Broken or Loose Dental Crown

A dental crown is a cap that covers the tooth to restore its shape, size, and strength. It's meant to last for many years, but sometimes, it can break or become loose.

If you have a broken or loose dental crown, don't panic. This is a common dental emergency that your dentist can easily fix. However, it's important to address this issue as soon as possible since leaving a damaged crown untreated may cause further complications.

Abscessed Tooth

An abscessed tooth is a severe dental emergency that requires immediate attention. It happens when bacteria infect the innermost part of the tooth, also known as the pulp. The infection forms a pocket of pus in your gums and causes pain, swelling, and fever.

If you experience these symptoms, it's essential to seek professional help right away. Your dentist will examine your mouth and take an X-ray to determine the extent of the infection.

Soft Tissue Injury

Soft tissue injuries can be painful and uncomfortable dental emergency. These types of injuries involve damage to the gums, tongue, lips, or cheeks. They can be caused by biting down too hard on food or accidentally bumping your mouth while playing sports.


Dental emergencies can happen at any time and can be quite distressing. However, with the right knowledge and prompt action, you can prevent further damage and alleviate pain until you reach a dentist.

Remember to always keep your cool during an emergency. Rushing or panicking will not help the situation but rather exacerbate it. Also, ensure that you have a reputable dentist’s phone number on speed dial for quick access in case of an emergency.

Don’t forget to schedule regular dental checkups as they are key in preventing dental emergencies from occurring in the first place. Stay safe!

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