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 Unless you are specifically trained to deal with them, emergencies can cause a lot of panic and anxiety. While dental emergencies often don’t seem to be as urgent as other medical or health-related emergencies, it is still crucial for you to be level headed so you can maintain good dental health.

The most common dental emergencies usually involve broken teeth due to an accident or sudden onset pain due to a long-term infection. These are not quite life-or-death situations, but it’s still in your best interest to seek dental assistance immediately.

Act Quickly

If you are in an accident and a tooth has been completely dislodged from your mouth, you should find a dentist as soon as possible. If you can, keep the knocked-out tooth damp. Teeth replanted in the mouth within an hour of the injury have an excellent chance for survival.

If you chip a tooth, the situation is not as urgent. However, a dentist should still check you out as soon as possible because some cracks can cause further damage to the tooth if not filled or repaired immediately. The sharp edges of a chipped tooth can also damage your gums or the inner surfaces of your mouth.

Some simple dental emergencies can lead to infection in your mouth. If left untreated, this infection can severely damage your teeth, gums, and can even spread to other parts of the body. If you are in an accident that jostles your mouth or your jaw, even if there aren’t visible effects on your teeth, a dentist should give you much-needed peace of mind.

What To Do In A Dental Emergency

1. Sudden onset pain – If you experience sudden pain in your tooth or gums, it could be because of a cracked tooth or an exposed nerve in the pulp.

The longer you delay treatment, the more pain you will feel. You don’t know when or even if the pain will go away. Instead of downing painkillers every few hours, an emergency appointment with your dentist will help diagnose the exact problem and provide you with treatment.

2. Blood in your mouth – If you are bleeding from the mouth, you need to find the origin immediately. If your gums are bleeding after you brush your teeth or floss, it’s a sign of gingivitis. If you’re bleeding after a dental procedure, you need immediate care.

No matter the source of bleeding, you need to consult with a dentist immediately.

3. Swollen jaw – If your jaw is swollen, it could be because of an infected tooth or a gum infection. This is a serious condition that will not get better on its own, and you need to see a dentist immediately. Don’t lie flat even while you sleep, and drink a lot of fluids.  

4. Traumatic injury – If you fall on your jaw or are injured around the mouth area, your dentist will be able to inspect your teeth closely to check for teeth injuries that you may not have noticed. Any trauma to your teeth should be diagnosed and treated immediately.


In the event of a dental emergency, it’s essential to act quickly. One hour can mean the difference between a root canal and a successful re-implantation of a knocked-out tooth. If you are experiencing pain, there’s no reason to suffer through it for days on end as you wait for it to go away. Your dentist will be able to help you resolve any dental issue, no matter what it may be.

If you are in need of emergency dental care in Raleigh, NC, Dr. Thomas E. Cooke Family Dentistry is the office to call. We are proud that we have provided quality emergency dental care in the area for over 25 years. Our staff is available long after business hours and during weekends, too. Book an appointment today!