L&R Dental

What Is Considered A Dental Emergency?

December 13, 2021
Posted By: LR Dental
emergency dentist inspecting patient teeth

It can be a common misconception that a dental emergency has to involve significant trauma caused by an accident or another extreme event. While this form of trauma certainly counts as a dental emergency, there are many other conditions that should be attended to immediately as well.

Even some seemingly minor conditions can lead to major oral health complications if they are not attended to by a qualified dentist. These are some of the dental conditions that you might be experiencing that qualify as emergency situations and should be looked at right away.



You have a painful tooth

This qualifies as a dental emergency if the pain is unbearable and/or you have had consistent pain for over 24 hours. There is likely something wrong that will not just go away by itself. Possible conditions include extreme cavities or an infection that is only going to become worse over time.

Your tooth has fallen out (or has been knocked out)

Even if the missing tooth is not immediately obvious (like one of your front teeth) you should never ignore the fact your mouth is now missing a key component of your oral health. Your jaw, teeth and gums will begin to change shape to accommodate the missing tooth and this can cause a range of problems. If not rectified quickly, this can lead to painful conditions and possibly surgery.

Permanent teeth that are mobile

Don't wait until a loose tooth results in it falling out completely. In many instances the permanent tooth can be saved, but only if there is rapid intervention by a qualified dentist. It is unlikely this situation will just resolve itself, so book an appointment immediately.

Swollen or inflamed gums

This is a sure sign of bacterial inflammation in your mouth. Left untreated, this will escalate to gum disease (periodontitis) and painful abscesses. Gum disease can erode the bones in your jaw that support your teeth and you can find yourself with serious oral health complications including the loss of many - or all - of your teeth.

Teeth or gums that are extremely sensitive

Extremely sensitive teeth usually mean the enamel has worn away to the point that the nerve ending has become exposed. You may think you have immaculate oral health, but this condition can be caused by over-brushing your teeth as well. Sensitive gums are usually a sign of bacterial infection which can lead to gum disease.

Small bumps on the gum line

This is usually the starting point of an abscess caused by bacteria on your gums. This infection needs to be treated immediately before it becomes too severe. In some rare cases, a bump on your gum can be a symptom of mouth cancer as well, so it always pays to have it checked at the very least.

Pain from a broken crown

While a broken dental crown in isolation is not an emergency, any pain means you should head straight to the dentist. Jagged edges can cause cuts and pain in other parts of your mouth that will need to be treated quickly.

For an emergency dental appointment, don't hesitate to contact L&R Dental today.