What to Do in a Dental Emergency?

dental emergency call

If youve ever had a dental emergency, you know it can be a scary experience. But the good news is this: Yes, dental emergencies are a big deal, they are not generally life-threatening. Youre going to be ok. There might be a pain, swelling, even some blood or a missing tooth. But the most important thing to do is stay calm and take action.

To calm your nerves, here are some common dental emergencies and what you can do if they occur.

3 Main Dental Emergencies

Chipped, cracked or missing tooth

This can happen because of an accidenta face plant or a hard hit in sports chips or knocks a tooth out, or youve bitten into something crunchy that your tooth just cant take. In many cases, theres a good chance that the tooth was already cracked and you didnt know it.

Either way, spitting out chunks of a tooth is an unpleasant experience.

What to do?

If you can collect whatever piece of tooth or full tooth youve lost, thats a good start put it somewhere safe. Try not to fiddle too much with the new space in your mouth or the piece of tooth thats been knocked out. If youve hit your face or mouth, get some ice on it. Take some ibuprofen if the pain is bad.

And thencall your dentist! Depending on how much of your root is exposed, its an easy enough fix and one that happens all the time.


The relentless pain of a toothache can range from feeling like a dull pounding drum to a sharp bolt of lightning shooting through your head. Either way, toothaches are not fun.

A person can have a toothache for a number of reasons, but generally speaking, its a warning sign of a deeper problem. A toothache could mean decay, a cavity, gum disease, or perhaps youve been grinding your teeth without knowing it.

What to do?

Proceed with proper oral hygiene by brushing and flossing. If you notice a particularly tender spot, ease up for now until the problem can be identified and fixed. Check for swelling and be careful with what you eat, you might have to turn to soup or soft food for a little while.

And thencall your dentist! They will book you in depending on the severity of the pain but dont delay in making that initial call.

Major swelling

If you notice that suddenly your face is looking a littlechipmunk-y, it can be very alarming. Swelling can again be the sign of something serious like an infection either of the tooth, gum or even bone.

What to do?

Try to get some ice on it right away to help take the swelling down try not to fuss with it too much. Your body is working to deal with it but you will likely need some medical attention as soon as possible. Also, try and stay upright and drink lots of water. Dehydration will only make things worse.

Where Do I Go For Emergency Dental Care?

And thencall your dentist! Actually, if its really painful or the swelling is sudden and drastic, you might want to head to the emergency room at a hospital. They might need to get you started on antibiotics right away to help fight the infection before your dentist has a chance to fix the root problem.

Whatever your emergency, the best course of action is to remain calm and call your dentist or the emergency dental clinic like Semiahmoo Dental. Dont try to fix things yourself but do try to stay hydrated, take something gentle for the pain, and rest if you need to, especially if you cant get in right away.

And dont worry weve seen it all so give us a call or contact our emergency dental clinic online if you are experiencing a dental emergency!