When Should You Seek Emergency Dental Treatment?

When Should You Seek Emergency Dental Treatment?

Jan, Mon, 2024

When it comes to emergency dental care, it’s important to know your options and what you should do in case of an emergency. This blog post will go through a few different types of dental emergencies, and suggestions on how to best react. Read on to learn more! 

Common Dental Symptoms

Ideally, you should visit the dentist every six months for regular checkups. This timeline may differ slightly depending on the level of care necessary for your particular smile. If there are any persisting symptoms such as bleeding or pain, it’s important to seek treatment immediately. As per medical insight provided by Cleveland Clinic, the following are common conditions that may require urgent dental care.


Toothaches can be common and might be due to a variety of things such as: biting down hard onto an object, teeth grinding, cavities, flossing, lodged objects, braces, etc. 

If you are experiencing a toothache, there are several steps you can take to find relief before seeking professional dental care. Here are some common suggestions:

  • Apply a cold compress: Placing an ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetables wrapped in a cloth on the affected area can help reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Over-the-counter pain relievers: Pain medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can provide temporary relief. However, it is important to follow the recommended dosage and consult a healthcare professional if necessary.
  • Rinse with warm saltwater: Mixing a teaspoon of salt in warm water and rinsing your mouth can help clean the area and alleviate discomfort.
  • Elevate your head: Propping up your head with pillows while lying down may help reduce the throbbing sensation associated with a toothache.
  • Avoid aggravating foods and drinks: Stay away from hot or cold foods and beverages, as they can worsen the pain.

Remember, these remedies are often temporary solutions, and it is crucial to seek professional dental care as soon as possible to address the underlying cause of the toothache. A dentist can diagnose the problem accurately and provide appropriate treatment to alleviate pain and restore oral health.

Cracked/Missing/Dislodged Teeth

If you have a cracked or missing tooth, it is important to take prompt action to prevent further damage and ensure proper dental care. Here are some general suggestions:

  • Assess the situation: Carefully evaluate the severity of the crack or the absence of the tooth. If there is excessive bleeding or severe pain, it is recommended to seek immediate emergency dental care.
  • Rinse your mouth: Gently rinse your mouth with warm saltwater to keep the area clean and reduce the risk of infection.
  • Preserve any broken tooth fragments: If a piece of the tooth has broken off, try to preserve it by placing it in milk or saliva (by spitting into a container) while seeking dental assistance.
  • Control bleeding and reduce swelling: Apply gentle pressure with a clean cloth or sterile gauze to stop any bleeding. To minimize swelling, apply a cold compress or ice pack wrapped in a cloth to the affected area.
  • Avoid chewing on the affected side: To prevent further damage or discomfort, avoid chewing on the side with the cracked or missing tooth until you can see a dentist.
  • Schedule an appointment with a dentist: It is crucial to visit a dentist as soon as possible. They will assess the situation, provide appropriate treatment options, and address any underlying issues.

Remember, these suggestions are general guidelines, and it is best to consult a dental professional for a comprehensive evaluation and personalized advice based on your specific situation.

Cloverdale Dental Centre
Cloverdale Dental Centre

After graduating his dental training at University of British Columbia in 2014, he moved to Central Alberta and has proudly helped communities with their dental care needs for 6 years before moving back to his always-home, B.C. His goal in dentistry is to care for his patients by treating, not just a single toothache at a time, but to look at patients as a whole person and to develop a healthy mouth in all aspects.

Dr. Jung never stops learning and attends a variety of continuing education and study clubs to provide the best and most modern care for his patients. Outside of dentistry, Dr. Jung enjoys spending time with his wife and daughter, playing tennis, playing musical instruments, and watching movies.

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