Dental Emergency – Why You Need to See an Emergency Dentist

Sean Cooper Avatar

Emergency Dentist
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A dental emergency is a serious problem that needs to be addressed right away. If left untreated, it could become much worse.

Most dental emergencies can be treated at your local urgent care center. However, some problems are more serious and require the assistance of an emergency dentist in Tampa FL.

Broken Tooth

If you have a broken tooth, you need to see an emergency dentist as soon as possible. Even if it is not painful, a crack or fracture can allow bacteria to penetrate the inner chamber of the tooth and cause infection.

Small breaks can usually be treated with a filling. However, larger fractures and breaks require root canal treatment or possibly removal of the tooth.

Serious breaks expose the nerve. This is extremely painful and will likely bleed. Rinse the mouth with lukewarm water and apply a cloth-covered ice pack to reduce swelling. You can also use an over-the-counter painkiller to manage the discomfort until you are seen by a dentist.

You can usually save a broken tooth if you can find the piece that broke off. Put it in a glass of milk or saliva (spit into a container if you can’t swallow) and head to the dentist as soon as you can. They may be able to glue the fragment back in place.

Damaged Filling or Crown

If a tooth has been damaged due to an accident or underlying dental issues, a visit to an emergency dentist can help resolve the problem and prevent further damage. Depending on the situation, the dentist may recommend a root canal or crown to alleviate pain and address the infection at its source.

A tooth that is made up of several large fillings or has lost its original crown is often a good candidate for a crown. A tooth composed of mostly filling material is too weak to support normal biting and chewing and can crack or break entirely without a proper restoration.

If you lose a filling or crown, be sure to protect the remaining portion of your tooth with dental cement or pieces of sugarless gum until you can see an Emergency Dentist in Tampa FL. It is important to avoid putting pressure on or attempting to re-fill the tooth, as this can lead to further decay and even more pain.

Lost Filling or Crown

A filling or crown is put on a tooth to restore its shape and function and to stop further decay. They can also strengthen a weak tooth. Occasionally, these materials can come off or fall out. It’s a good idea to save the lost crown or filling in a safe place and bring it to your dentist for an evaluation.

A lost filling or crown doesn’t usually require emergency treatment, but your tooth can be sensitive and painful afterward as the tissue is exposed to air, temperature, and pressure. You may find relief by applying a small amount of clove oil (available at drug stores) with a cotton swab to the affected area.

If the tooth is not painful, you can try to put the crown back in place by cleaning it and smearing it with temporary dental cement available at drug stores. However, a missing crown left for a long time can lead to further tooth damage and the crown might no longer fit.


A toothache is often the first sign of a dental problem. Whether the pain is caused by a cracked or broken tooth, gum disease, or even an untreated abscess, it is important to get the problem taken care of quickly.

If you are experiencing a toothache, try taking an over-the-counter pain reliever or place a cold compress on your cheek to ease the discomfort until you can make it to your emergency dentist. You should also avoid touching the affected tooth and try to protect any fillings or crowns that may have fallen off by placing dental cement, cotton balls, or pieces of gauze on them until you can see your dentist.

Toothaches can be caused by many things, including sinus pressure (which can put stress on the roots of your upper molars) or extreme cold. In some cases, what appears to be a toothache may actually be the symptom of an entirely different medical issue like a heart condition or a migraine headache.

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