What to do in case of a Dental Emergency

Dental emergency services provide immediate care for patients who have suffered some kind of trauma to the mouth resulting in fractured or dislodged teeth, pain, bleeding, or lacerations to the gums.

Dental Emergencies That Need Urgent Treatment:

Most dentists have flexible schedules to accommodate emergency appointments for patients in distress. Depending on the severity of your case, you may be instructed to go to the emergency room and then visit the dentist for additional treatment if necessary.

But what constitutes a dental emergency?
Dental emergencies that require immediate care include:

Knocked-out teeth:
A knocked-out tooth could lead to extensive bleeding, which can be controlled by applying direct pressure on the site with a cold compress. Recover the dislodged tooth, rinse it to remove dirt, and then gently restore it in its socket, making sure that you don’t touch the root section.

Alternatively, you can place the tooth in a cup of milk or wrapped in a cool, wet cloth and go to the dentist. The tooth can be successfully re-implanted within 30 minutes of falling out, so you should seek immediate assistance at the closest dental practice.

Loose or misaligned tooth:
A loose tooth or one that is out of alignment should be fixed as soon as possible. While this is likely to feel uncomfortable, you should not try to force it back into position. Use your finger to apply light pressure, or gently bite it down until the dentist is ready to see you.

Chipped, cracked, or fractured tooth:
Chipped or broken teeth that don’t cause any pain or sensitivity are not dental emergencies. This also applies to damaged tooth restorations, but you should still visit your dentist as soon as possible to contain the problem.

Whether the damage is severe or minimal, you should avoid chewing with the damaged tooth to avoid causing more damage. For severe damage that extends to the inner structure of the tooth, clean your mouth with warm water and take a painkiller (like acetaminophen) to manage the pain as you wait to see a dentist.

Related Article: Broken Tooth Repair in Kansas City

An infection around the tooth’s root or gum line can be very painful. It can also cause swelling in the soft tissues. An abscess should be treated immediately to stop the infection from spreading to other parts of the body.

Broken dental appliance:
Broken braces and wires can injure the soft tissues in your mouth, cause bleeding, and make it difficult to speak and eat. Damaged appliances should be fixed immediately to avoid injuries and to restore your quality of life.

Facial fracture:
Injuries to the face that result in broken bones and teeth should be treated as medical emergencies. The help of a dentist can be sought after the patient is out of danger.

All Dental Problems should be checked by a Professional:
Some oral injuries require more urgent care than others, though you should visit your dentist as soon as a problem arises since delayed treatment can lead to serious complications. Dental emergency services typically cost a lot more than regular dental services. So any problems that don’t require urgent care should be dealt with during regular office hours.

Related Article: How we provide Urgent Dental Care

Keep in mind that most dental emergencies can be avoided by scheduling regular checkups. Dr. Anderson and his team of expert dentists should be able to identify the early stages of problems that could lead to emergency treatment, such as tooth decay, loose teeth, or chipped/broken teeth or restorations due to grinding and clenching, and recommend solutions to keep the problem from escalating.


Contact us immediately if you are experiencing a dental emergency or schedule your appointment to meet with any of our skilled dentists at one of our three conveniently located dental office locations within the Kansas City area, including Lee’s Summit / Independence, the Country Club Plaza and Downtown Kansas City. The gentle dentists and expert team at Thomas L. Anderson and Associates look forward to working with you to treat your dental emergency, achieve proper oral health and a beautiful smile that will last a lifetime. If you have any questions about your dental insurance benefits, please do not hesitate to contact us.  We are happy to review your policy! Please give us a call today to schedule an appointment and become part of our dental family.