What Are Dental Emergencies and What to Do About It

Dental emergencies are injuries and bruises that affect the teeth, gums, soft tissues, and dental restorations. Some of these emergencies don’t cause any pain, though pain is a common symptom, and therefore may go unnoticed. If you are in doubt if the dental accident is an emergency or not, visit our emergency dentistry in Mechanicsburg for an assessment.

What you do after a dental emergency occurs will make the difference in your recovery and teeth preservation. We advise you to perform first aid and here are some of the common emergencies and how to handle them:

Knocked Teeth

Whenever your teeth get knocked out from the root, it is critical to visit the dentist in the first 30 minutes. The teeth can be saved from extraction if you get treated within the first hour. Before you to the emergency room, do the following:

  • Locate the avulsed tooth immediately and pick it by the crown or chewing surface not the root. If possible, try to place the tooth back to the root. Gently push the tooth with your fingers and hold it in place by biting it down.
  • Use water to gently rinse the dirt and don’t use any soap or chemicals, scrub, or wrap the tooth with a tissue.
  • Keep the tooth moist at all times. If it’s not possible to put the tooth back to the socket, put it in milk to preserve it.
  • Visit a dentist near you within 30 minutes after the injury occurs

Chipped and Cracked Teeth

Teeth can get chipped or cracked, and unless it a very minor chip, the problem should be fixed by a dentist. But in the meantime, it is important to try and reduce the pain as well as protect the teeth from further damage.

  • Rinse your mouth with warm water to remove any pieces
  • Apply pressure or bite a gauze pad to stop bleeding
  • Use cold compress and ice to reduce swelling
  • You can use pain medication, but as prescribed by the dentist


Toothaches can be a sign of dental decay, fracture, bruises, infection, or exposed teeth. If the pain is sudden and severe, then you need emergency dental treatment. Additionally, try to:

  • Rinse the mouth and use dental floss to remove any food particles
  • If you have swelling, use a cold compress on the cheek or mouth
  • Avoid using aspirin or pain killers on the gum because it can cause inflammation

Dental Abscess

An abscessed tooth is an infection of the gum caused by severe gum disease, leftover cavity or trauma to the teeth. Abscess teeth can cause fever, pus, swollen glands, and bad taste. If left untreated, the infection can spread to the surrounding tissues or worse still sepsis. That’s why you need to visit a dentist near you for immediate treatment. You may require surgery to remove the infection, but in the meantime rinse your mouth with saltwater.


Soft Tissue Injuries

These are bruises that affect the tongue, gums, lips, cheeks, and on top of the mouth. These injuries can cause bleeding and infection, so to prevent that:

    • Use a mild water solution to rinse your mouth
    • Apply a gauze pad or tea bag to stop bleeding
    • Hold a cold compress on your cheek for ten minutes to control swelling
    • If the bleeding continues, come to Carlisle Pike Family Dentistry immediately for assessment

    Broken Braces

    Your brace can break due to sports accidents, that’s why you should wear a mouthguard always. However, when the braces break or the wire sticks out of the cheeks and are poking the gums or tongue try using a pencil to fix it to a comfortable position.

    If it’s not possible to reposition, use a cotton ball and visit an orthodontist. Don’t remove or cut the wire as you may accidentally swallow it.

    Dental accidents can occur at any time with severe or mild symptoms. When it does, don’t take chances, but follow the above-mentioned first aid tips. Next, visit our emergency dentistry in Mechanicsburg, PA for treatment immediately or within an hour.

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