Dental Emergencies: What They Are, What to Do

Emergency Rooms across the country find themselves in a pickle as patients come in for tooth pain, tooth infection, and jaw and gum problems. A hospital may offer pain management and send you on your way, but the best thing to do for tooth pain is to make an appointment with your dentist. A dental emergency is very specific and can be very dangerous. If you are having a dental emergency, it is important to see a dentist right away—and dentists can treat dental emergencies far better than the hospital.

What is a Dental Emergency?

You experience a dental emergency when your tooth is knocked out (avulsed), forced out of position or loosened (extruded), or cracked or broken (fractured). These traumas can happen during sports, car accidents, a fall, and more. No matter what causes the damage, once it’s done, and if it’s due to trauma, it is an emergency.

What to do During a Dental Emergency?

Go see your dentist immediately. Call your dental office and explain that you have an emergency and need the next available appointment. Your dentist understands the importance of immediate care. Seeing a dentist within 30 minutes of the trauma can save your injured tooth!

If you lose a tooth – Call your dentist. Do not touch the base of your tooth. Do not let the tooth dry out. Wrap in a paper towel and dip into milk or saliva or try and put it back into the socket and bite down on gauze or a wet tea bag.

If you loosen a tooth – Avoid forcing the tooth back into place. Take some over-the-counter medication for minor pain (not aspirin).

If you break a tooth – Clean the mouth with water, use an ice pack to reduce swelling and over-the-counter medication for pain (not aspirin). See your dentist as soon as possible to determine how badly the tooth is damaged and how to repair it.

Injuries to the lips, jaw, cheek, and tongue may need to be assessed and treated at an emergency room, and your dentist contacted.

A minor toothache is not an emergency. It is uncomfortable and painful but may not constitute an emergency unless there is trauma involved. If you have a toothache, clean the mouth with warm water, use dental floss and a toothbrush to clean away food that may be causing pain, and use a gentle pain reliever. Do not use sharp objects like knives or tooth picks to remove food that is causing pain.

Do not use aspirin for a toothache, tooth, gum, or jaw issues.

At Rivas Dental Care [], we want all of our patients in and around Miami to have comprehensive dental care. That’s why we offer preventative care, endodontics, oral surgery, periodontics, cosmetic dentistry, restorations, realignment, and dental emergencies. We know that emergencies occur anytime day or night, and we are available when you need us. Our emergency number is (305) 226-6110.

Visit [] for tips to help you avoid dental emergencies.

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