A dental emergency refers to any damage or illness that affects your teeth or mouth, including severe toothaches, broken or chipped teeth, gum injuries, and oral edema. It is recommended that you always seek dental care for dental injuries, regardless of whether they are painful, in order to restore the tooth or teeth, cure wounds and infections, and prevent further damage. 

To increase your chances of a full recovery, there are a few dental first aid measures you may take before you visit the dentist.


Toothaches are not always considered as dental emergencies. Before visiting a dentist to check on the toothache, you should:

To keep your mouth moist and clear of particles, gently rinse it with warm, salted water.

  • Apply a cold compress to the painful side of the face to reduce swelling. Applying a warm or hot compress might make the discomfort worse.
  • Use an over-the-counter painkiller to relieve pain.

Oral abscesses or edema

A pus-filled, swelling infection within, beneath, or next to a tooth is called an abscess. 

Abscesses are often quite painful, but sometimes, a person may have an abscess that drains itself and causes little to no pain, or it may go undetected (generally after a period of suffering that has cleared itself). The symptoms might include fever, swollen face and lymph glands, dull aching, sharp pain, and odd-smelling discharge from the mouth. 

When dealing with an abscess, you need to:

  • Use an over-the-counter painkiller to relieve pain first.
  • If there is any swelling, apply a cold compress to the area.
  • Seek dental care as soon as you can. medications are likely to be prescribed if you see a dentist, but it’s still crucial to get dental care afterwards since medications just address the infection’s immediate symptoms and don’t stop the infection’s source from spreading and creating new issues.

Displaced tooth

When a kid loses a baby tooth (also known as a milk tooth) that did not come out naturally, you should:

  • To stop the bleeding, gently push on the gum around the socket and provide pressure using a sterile gauze pad.
  • A baby tooth may harm the adult tooth below, therefore never try to keep it in its socket.
  • You should see a dentist right away if you think the lips or gums around the injury may have been impacted.

Chipped, cracked, or broken teeth

If you caused damage to a tooth that resulted in a chip, crack, or fracture, you should check the tooth for indications of nerve exposure, which will show as a pink hue. See a dentist as soon as possible. Dental care received quickly may save your tooth. It’s a good idea to bring any chipped tooth fragments to your dental appointment.

Bleeding in the teeth

In the event that your cheeks, lips, or gums have been damaged, you need to:

  • Apply light yet firm pressure to the bleeding spot using sterile gauze, bandages, or other clean material. It is best to sit up straight since lying down can encourage bleeding, and this pressure should be applied for at least ten minutes, or until the bleeding stops. In the event that bleeding cannot be stopped, get medical help immediately.
  • Use a cold compress on the area or close by after the bleeding has stopped to help reduce discomfort and swelling.
  • Use a half-teaspoon of salt per cup of warm water to gently rinse the region to remove any debris and lower the risk of infection.
  • Seek medical assistance as soon as possible.

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