Having Dental Emergency? Here’s What You Should & Shouldn’t Do

Having Dental Emergency? Here’s What You Should & Shouldn’t Do

December 7, 2022

What is Dental Emergency?

A dental emergency is when you are in pain, but it’s not just any kind of pain. It’s an acute pain caused by trauma, infection, or tooth decay. If a sudden change in your oral health causes severe pain, bleeding, and swelling, you may need to seek emergency dental care near you.

What are the Common Dental Emergencies?

Several dental accidents require you to visit an emergency dentist near you and they include:

Dental Pain

A persistent gnawing sensation that doesn’t go away despite using painkillers may signal an infection; this discomfort is typically caused by bacteria trying to get into the bloodstream through cracks or holes in teeth or gums (called perforations). Our emergency dentist in Fairfax, VA will likely recommend antibiotics if this condition persists after daily doses of ibuprofen fail to relieve symptoms.


When decay occurs inside one tooth or adjacent ones (called multiple caries), bacteria can create an abscess under the gum line where it meets its neighbors. These bacteria can cause inflammation that leads to pus and swelling of the gum tissue.

A dental abscess can be treated with antibiotics, painkillers, and draining of pus from the infected area.

Broken Tooth

If you’ve lost any part(s) due to trauma, such as hitting against another surface hard enough that there aren’t any nerves left intact, then they won’t function properly anymore.

What to Do After a Dental Emergency?

If you have an emergency, it’s best to go straight to the nearest emergency room. In the meantime:

1) Do Rinse Your Mouth with Warm Water

Rinsing is important because it removes any residual food that could be in your mouth and prevent the growth of bacteria. It also helps to cleanse your teeth and remove any plaque.

2) Do Keep any Knocked-out Teeth Moist

There are several options, but the most effective is by using milk. The milk will keep the teeth nerves and ligaments alive and keep them from drying.

3) Do Apply a Cold Compress

This can help alleviate pain and swelling, as well as reduce inflammation. You should apply the compress for

5 minutes on each side of the injury, then remove it for 30 minutes to allow healing. Repeat this process until your mouth feels better (or your dentist tells you not to).

4) Stop the Bleeding

The first thing you should do when a tooth is broken is to stop the bleeding. If you have access to cold water, use it to apply pressure on the wound until you see that it’s stopped bleeding. For this purpose, you can also use ice packs or an ice bag wrapped in gauze cloths (like those used for cleaning wounds).

If neither of these methods works and your tooth bleeds profusely, seek professional help as soon as possible!

5) Take the Necessary Steps to Avoid Dental Emergencies

If you’re concerned about your dental health, several things can help keep your mouth healthy. Visit our dentist in Merrifield, VA regularly and make sure to brush twice a day. Use dental floss and mouthwash as needed. Wear a mouth guard when playing sports or doing activities with a risk of injury, like biking or skydiving (but not if it’s just for fun).

What Not to Do in a Dental Emergency?

a) Do not Touch the Root of the Teeth

Do not touch the roots of the teeth when pushing them back to the socket, as this can damage them.

b) Do Not Delay Going to the Dentist

Do not wait until the next day or even until you have a fever. You could have a toothache that will get worse as time goes on. If you wait too long, it’s more likely that your tooth will need to be extracted than treated by a dentist.

If you don’t go right away and end up with an abscessed tooth instead of just being slightly uncomfortable in the meantime, then see your dentist right away!

c) Do Not Use Aspirin for Pain

Using aspirin for pain is not recommended. Aspirin can cause bleeding and stomach irritation and should never be used if you have pain or bleeding.

Get Emergency Dental Care Near You

A dental emergency can cause complications if not addressed on time, and it is crucial to seek urgent care. Call us now or book an appointment with us at Drummond Dental Care to get emergency dentistry near Merrifield, Fairfax, VA and get assistance if you experience a dental accident.

© 2024 Drummond Dental Care | Privacy Policy | Web Design, Digital Marketing & SEO By Adit
Click to listen highlighted text!