Where Should I Go if I Have a Dental Emergency?

Dental problems may be unexpected and require a few deep breaths, healing time, or even immediate treatment. It is best to know whether to visit an emergency room or see your dentist if it is a dental emergency. Assessing your symptoms and severity will help you determine the best path.

What is a Dental Emergency?


Routine dental checkups involve consultations, regular cleanings, X-rays, and more. A dental emergency is not typical. It is obvious and requires immediate action to address severe discomfort, pain, or trauma to the mouth. Instances such as broken dental appliances, chipped veneers, or lost fillings do not constitute an emergency, even if they are highly inconvenient. 

Is a Toothache a Dental Emergency?


You should take a toothache seriously, but the problem may not require emergency care. However, your toothache could be the first sign of a bigger problem. If left untreated, it could lead to more severe dental issues. So, you should call your dentist whenever you have a toothache to determine whether you need immediate treatment. 

How to Determine Whether You Have a Dental Emergency


Not all dental issues require emergency care. In cases where you have a mouth injury, one or more missing teeth, or a tooth abscess causing severe pain, you may need emergency care. Severe dental problems or injuries can lead to worse problems if not treated immediately. In case of any dental damage or concern, consult your dentist about the best course of action. 

What to Do if You Have a Dental Emergency


The first thing you should do is to call your dentist if it is during regular business hours. Otherwise, it would be best if you rushed to a local emergency room or urgent care center for severe oral injuries.

A dental emergency can occur at any time. You may not know where to go for emergency treatment. Dental emergencies, like other medical emergencies, require different levels of care. Where you go for treatment will depend on your problem’s severity.

When to Rush to the Emergency Room


Dental traumas or emergencies involving the mouth and face requiring immediate attention include:

  • Jaw fractures

  • Severe lacerations or cuts to the mouth or face

  • Jaw dislocations

  • A swollen infection or abscess that is affecting your swallowing or breathing

You should call 911 or rush to the nearest emergency room in these situations. Do not wait for your dentist to handle a potentially fatal condition. 

When to See Your Dentist


Some dental emergencies are not life-threatening but may still require immediate treatment. If you get your tooth knocked out or break a tooth while chewing, you can probably wait for your dentist to fix the problem. That is unless it causes severe bleeding or occurs due to a violent injury.

When to See an Endodontist


If you have pulp tissue damage causing pain, your dentist will refer you to an endodontist specializing in pulp-related treatments. The endodontist will remove the damaged pulp before filling and sealing the remaining space. That is what dental care professionals call a root canal. 

A dental emergency may occur during nonbusiness hours or a holiday. If your dentist cannot see you and you still require immediate treatment, go to the nearest hospital in your area.

For any dental emergency, visit Cal Oaks Dental at our Murrieta, California office. Call (951) 501-4900 to schedule an appointment today.

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