Almost everyone will experience a dental emergency at some point. If you’re like most people, though, you may be wondering just what constitutes an emergency dental situation. Some issues may seem like legitimate emergencies, but they’re actually not. In other cases, a problem may seem minor, but it actually requires immediate professional attention. Read on to learn more about dental emergencies and the steps involved in assessing and resolving them, so you’ll be better prepared when an unexpected situation arises. 

Taking a Closer Look at Emergency Dental Care

Emergency dental needs can be caused by a variety of accidents, injuries, and other problems. Practices like South High Dental are on call to help patients who are experiencing critical issues. The following problems are among those that qualify as true dental emergencies.

Severe Toothaches

Severe toothaches can be caused by tooth decay, infections, and dental trauma among other issues. Emergency dentists can diagnose the cause of the toothache and provide treatment options. Those might include dental fillings, root canal therapy, or tooth extraction depending on the cause of the toothache.

Broken Teeth

Accidents, falls, and injuries can cause broken teeth. These situations can be painful and frightening. They generally require immediate dental care. Emergency dentists determine the extent of the damage and whether it can be repaired. Resolving a broken tooth may involve bonding, crowns, or extraction.

Knocked-Out Teeth

When a tooth is knocked out, time is of the essence. Receiving immediate dental care greatly increases the chances of saving the tooth. Dentists may attempt to put the tooth back into place or provide an implant or bridge as a replacement option.


Abscesses are infections that can occur in the tooth or the surrounding gum tissue. They’re caused by bacteria. Abscesses can be extremely painful, and they’re often accompanied by swelling. Immediate treatment is required to alleviate pain and prevent the infection from spreading. Emergency dental care for abscesses may involve draining the infection, prescribing antibiotics, and addressing the underlying cause of the problem.

Jaw Pain

Jaw pain is generally the result of trauma to the jaw bone or joint. Emergency dentists start by assessing the problem and providing pain relief. Depending on the cause of the pain, the dentist may need to manipulate the jaw back into its proper position or set the bone.

Soft Tissue Injuries

Accidents or trauma can cause lacerations or other injuries to the lips, gums, tongue, or cheeks. Emergency dentists have the knowledge and experience to treat these issues as well. Treatment may require suturing wounds or other measures. Not all soft tissue injuries are severe enough to require emergency dental care, but some of them shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Problems with Previous Dental Work

If a dental crown, bridge, or filling becomes loose, dislodged, or broken, it can cause a great deal of pain. It may also leave the affected tooth vulnerable to further damage. Emergency dentists may repair or replace the dental restoration to restore functionality and prevent complications.

Orthodontic Emergencies

People who have braces or other dental apparatuses in place may experience emergencies as well. Those could include broken wires, loose brackets, damaged implants, and many other issues. These situations should be addressed promptly. An emergency orthodontist or dentist will resolve the problem and ensure the dental apparatus remains functional.

Conquering Emergency Dental Issues

In all these cases, seeking emergency dental care is crucial. Doing so will minimize pain, prevent complications, and preserve oral health. If you experience any dental emergency, don’t hesitate to contact your dentist. Immediate care is the key to success both now and moving forward.