How to Handle A Dental Emergency


Do you know what to do if you or a family member suffers a dental emergency?

We’ve put together a list of a few common dental disasters and quick steps to take that can help relieve pain, prevent further damage and possibly even save a tooth.

severe pain

1. If You Break A Tooth

  • Save any pieces of the tooth that you can.
  • Rinse your mouth with warm salt water.
  • Apply cold compress to side of face.
  • Call our office right away at (805)238-1033

2. If You Knock-Out A Tooth

  • Retrieve the tooth if possible.
  • Rinse the tooth gently with water. Do not scrub it!
  • If Possible, place the tooth back in the socket, making sure it faces the right way. Do not force it! Teeth have the highest chances of being saved if they can be returned to the socket within one hour of being knocked out.
  • If not able to reinsert, put the tooth in a small sealed bag or container with milk.
  • Call our office immediately or try contacting the nearest Oral Surgeon.

3. If You Have Sudden, Severe Pain and/or Swelling

  • Rinse your mouth out thoroughly with warm salt water.
  • If possible, floss gently; this will remove any irritating lodged food particles.
  • Apply a cold compress to the side of face to ease pain and swelling.
  • Call our office right away.
  • If there is facial swelling and you are not able to reach our doctor go to the nearest urgent care or hospital. Facial selling may be a sign of an abscess which can have serious consequences if not treated immediately.

4. If You Have Soft-Tissue Injury with Bleeding (tongue, cheeks, gums, lips)

  • Rinse your mouth gently with warm salt water.
  • Use moistened gauze to apply pressure to the bleeding area. Hold in place for 15-20 minutes.
  • Hold a cold compress to the affected area to slow bleeding and control pain.
  • If the bleeding doesn’t stop within 20 minutes, call our office or go to the emergency room.

Make Sure to Include Dental Supplies in Your Family Emergency Kit:

for suggestions on how to make a Kit go to:

Best Advice is to Avoid Dental Emergencies.

  • Brush and floss daily to maintain strong, health teeth.
  • See your Dentist and Hygienist twice annually for regular cleanings and check-ups.
  • Wear a mouthguard when participating in sports.
  • Avoid Chewing Ice, Popcorn kernels, hard candies and other foods that could cause damage.

Bookmark this page and save our phone number for future reference in the event of an Emergency (805)238-0133

Accidents happen every day.  Our Paso Robles dental practice is ready to help you deal successfully with any dental disaster that comes your way.

Grant E. Marcum, DDS ~ 1004 Vine Street ~ Paso Robles, CA 93446 ~ (805)238-0133

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