Do you find our website to be helpful?
Yes   No

Is My Dental Problem an Emergency?

Did you bite down on a piece of ice and then see a part of one of your teeth slip out? That’s a dental emergency, right? Perhaps a tooth began to bother you a little during dinner. Should you call the dentist for that? 

You might hesitate to call the dentist’s emergency number, but Therese Murphy, DDS, and her  caring team at Temecula Ridge Dentistry in Temecula, California, are here to help you, whether it’s for routine checkups or urgent care. Here’s the lowdown on true dental emergencies.

Dental emergencies

Here are some situations that require immediate dental attention, followed by those cases that don’t rank as emergencies. Our practice sets aside time in the day to treat a dental emergency should you experience one. We know they happen. 

Uncontrolled bleeding

If the bleeding is uncontrolled and our office is open, have someone bring you right away. Otherwise, get to your nearest emergency room. You must receive immediate treatment.

Fractured or knocked out tooth

If you’ve been hit by a ball or other object and your tooth is knocked loose or out of your mouth, you have a dental emergency. What should you do? 

If you can fit your tooth back in the socket, do it, but avoid touching the root of the tooth. Use a piece of gauze or clean cloth to bite on gently to keep it in place. Apply a cold compress if you can.

If you can’t put it back in its socket, soak it in milk or hold it between your gum and cheek to prevent it from drying out. Finally, try to get to Dr. Murphy or an emergency room within 30 minutes.

If you have a fractured tooth, you can rinse your mouth using warm water to clear away any food or debris, and then apply a cold compress on your cheek to reduce the swelling. 

Loose tooth

Unless you’re a child, you shouldn’t have a loose tooth. If you have one, it might be due to an injury or infection. Either way, show it to Dr. Murphy as soon as you can so she can try to save it.

Severe pain in a tooth or your jaw

If you have severe tooth or jaw pain, call us right away. Severe pain, with or without a fever, may indicate an abscess. Get treatment right away, because you likely have an infection in the root of the tooth and need an antibiotic, and then possibly other dental treatment at a later date. 

Lost crown

If you have lost a crown, make an appointment within a day or two. If you have the crown, you can use dental cement ― which is usually available in drugstores ― to put the crown back in temporarily. You can also use dental cement to fill the void left by the lost filling until you can get to our office. 

Dental problems that aren’t emergencies

Did a piece of your tooth or veneer fall out at dinner? Perhaps it was a filling that dropped into your lap. If you have a dental appliance, a part may break off.

If your tooth and mouth don’t hurt at all, or if your pain is minor and tamed by an over-the-counter pain reliever, you can either call our helpline right away or wait until the office opens in the morning. We’ll schedule a time for you to come in soon. 

These problems need to be treated but aren’t classified as emergencies. 

If you have a dental emergency, Dr. Murphy is going to try to save your tooth and relieve your pain. 

Temecula Ridge Dentistry is available when you need us, even if it’s right away. Call for an appointment. We look forward to being your partner in your dental health.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Common Causes of Yellow Teeth

What comes to mind when you see someone flash a stunningly bright-white smile? It might well be a combination of “How did they do that?” and “How can I do that?” You can get there too, but it’s good to know what can interfere with a white smile.

5 Ways Veneers Can Improve Your Smile

Are you looking for a simple way to instantly improve your smile? Our custom-made veneers are a long-lasting solution that can fix a variety of dental flaws and protect your teeth from future damage.

3 Facts You May Not Know About Invisalign

You probably already know that Invisalign® gives you a nearly invisible way to straighten your teeth. But here are a few things you may not know about this smile-improving option and how it can seamlessly fit into your life.