Dental emergencies are an unfortunate interruption. You’re eating something crunchy and suddenly a tooth cracks or you wake up in the morning with swelling and pain in your jaw. Suddenly, a necessary shift in your routine is required.
If you experience a toothache, lost filling or crown or if you experience pain or discomfort, contact our clinic as soon as possible. We can help.
We’ll treat you quickly, relieve your pain and organise a treatment plan to solve your condition. Of course, if you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency, please go to your local emergency department.
Common Dental Emergencies
What are the most common reasons that people need emergency dental care?
Sudden Tooth Pain – Significant tooth pain with no apparent cause results in many an emergency dental visit. Tooth pain should never be ignored. Many serious conditions can cause tooth pain including:
- Cavities that have penetrated deep into the tooth
- Advanced gum disease
- An abscessed tooth
- Exposed tooth roots
- An impacted tooth
These conditions should be treated promptly to prevent further damage to the tooth or spreading of the infection.
Chipped or Fractured Teeth – Chipped or broken teeth can be caused by sudden trauma to the mouth or by simply biting down on a hard object. Sometimes this happens because you had a cavity and didn’t know it, and the internal structure has been weakened. If possible, keep the chip or piece that broke off of the tooth and bring it with you to your appointment.
Lost Teeth – Whether your tooth was knocked out due to an injury or you lost a tooth for no apparent reason, losing a tooth is a dental emergency. In some cases, we can replace the tooth if we can get to it fast enough, but sometimes a lost tooth will have to be replaced with a dental implant or a bridge.
Our chances of saving the tooth are best if you retrieve the tooth and quickly rinse it with cool water, avoiding the root area. Try to replace the tooth back in the socket, but don’t force it. If the tooth can’t be replaced in the socket, keep it in a glass of milk.
Other Dental Emergencies
Some of the other reasons we would need to see you quickly include:
- A tooth has become dislodged (but not fully knocked out).
- An object is stuck between your teeth that can’t be removed with brushing or dental floss.
- A filling or crown has fallen out.
- You are experiencing a dental abscess (infection).
- You have injured your gums or palate.
Call our surgery to book an appointment for any dental emergency. We welcome new patients on an emergency basis and will help restore your oral health and your smile
Is my situation an emergency?
If you're unsure whether your dental situation is an emergency or not, you're not alone. Many people will put off going to see the dentist when they have a sore tooth as they either don't want to cause a fuss or they're not sure whether their situation counts as an emergency. The general rule of thumb is that if your teeth or mouth are causing you pain, swelling, or significant discomfort, it is considered an emergency and you should book an emergency dentistry appointment as soon as you are able to.
What to do if you're experiencing a dental emergency
If you're experiencing a dental emergency, get in touch with your dentist immediately. Not only will they book you in for an emergency appointment, but they will also be able to advise you about what to do while you're waiting for your appointment. This may include:
- How to safely and temporarily relieve tooth or mouth pain
- How to care for cracked or broken teeth to ensure they don't get worse before the appointment
- What foods or liquids you may need to avoid eating until your teeth are assessed and repaired in your emergency appointment
- What to do if you have lost a filling
Can't get to us straight away?
If you can't get in to see us straight away, it's important that you take care of yourself until you are able to make it into the surgery for your emergency dental appointment.
If the pain is excruciating and you're experiencing symptoms such as severe bleeding or infection, you should consider heading into the emergency room and getting some help. In general, a dental emergency that requires immediate attention to stop bleeding or to prevent a serious infection from impacting you is considered a medical emergency.
Have you chipped a tooth or lost a filling?
Chipped or cracked teeth or lost fillings can lead to a build-up of food debris in the impacted area. This food accumulation can lead to decay or deterioration of your impacted tooth if you don't get it repaired by a dental surgeon as soon as possible. Dental decay can lead to sensitivity to hot or cold food, extreme pain when eating or drinking, or constant toothaches, even if you're not eating anything.
If you have chipped a tooth or lost a filling, it's important that you book in to see your emergency dentist quickly. A swift appointment can help to avoid further dental issues down the road that can lead to tooth loss, root canals, and incredibly expensive dental work to try and repair the damage of long-term decay.
Are you experiencing facial swelling or extreme pain?
Facial swelling or extreme pain in your mouth is often a sign that you may have a serious underlying issue with your teeth. There are a variety of dental issues that can cause facial swelling, including:
- Gingivitis or gum disease
- Some forms of oral cancer
- Blocked salivary glands
- Impacted tooth
- Wisdom teeth
- Vitamin C deficiency
- Some medications
- Infected tooth
Book An Emergency Dentist ASAP
If you're experiencing facial swelling, you should book an emergency appointment with your dentist to ascertain what is causing it and help rule out any serious reasons. The sooner you know what the issue is, the sooner you can get it sorted and begin to see the swelling reduce.