Signs Of A Dental Emergency – What Could Be Causing It

Much like the rest of the body, aches and pains are common occurrences. But when you’re experiencing severe pain or an infection in your tooth, gums, or jaw, how do you know if it’s an emergency? The last thing you need is the hassle of rushing to the emergency room only to find out that it wasn’t a serious problem. But you should visit your dental clinic if you feel you’re experiencing an issue that requires emergency care. 

Warning Signs That You Need Emergency Dental Care

Cracked or Fractured Tooth

If you’ve suffered a cracked or fractured tooth, it’s best to seek emergency dental treatment as soon as possible. Firstly, you don’t want to walk around with a chipped tooth. Secondly, a bacterial infection may occur if your broken tooth is left untreated. 

The causes of a cracked tooth can vary, whether it’s from injury to the mouth, biting down on hard foods, or excessive pressure from teeth grinding.  

It’s paramount that you avoid chewing with a cracked tooth to thwart the risk of causing any further damage. If the crack is small, your emergency dentist can treat it with a filling. However, if the cracked tooth is a substantial size, a root canal and crown may be necessary for repair. 

Knocked-Out Tooth 

Sometimes accidents happen that lead to a broken bone, nosebleed, or knocked-out tooth. You can expect excessive bleeding when a tooth has been completely dislodged from the root. It’s a good idea to apply pressure on the affected area with a cold compress. Applying pressure should slow down the bleeding. 

A dislodged permanent tooth can be successfully implanted back in your mouth within 30 minutes of the accident, so it’s best to have it treated as quickly as possible. You should visit your dentist immediately.  

Ensure that the tooth is washed gently with clean water (don’t scrub  or use any soap products), and try your best to slide it back into the socket before heading to the emergency dentist. 

It’s perfectly alright if the idea of sticking a dislodged tooth back into your socket is too much for you. Instead, place the tooth in a glass of milk or saliva. No, really. It works. Milk contains proteins and substances that help maintain a good pH balance and helps to fight off bacteria.

If a baby tooth is knocked out, do not put it back into the socket as it may cause damage to the tooth growing underneath. 

Dental Abscess 

An abscessed tooth is a painful infection that starts at the root of your tooth. A dental abscess is typically the result of gum disease or a cavity that’s been left untreated. The symptoms associated with an abscessed tooth can range anywhere from pain around the tooth, bad taste in your mouth to a fever or swollen glands. In some cases, you may even notice pus around the abscessed tooth. 

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should seek emergency dental care from your Saskatoon dentist, especially if swelling from an abscess has made it hard to breathe or if you’re feeling severe pain. A dental abscess may require surgery to ensure the infection is drained and treated properly. 

Loose Teeth

As a child, it’s normal to have loose teeth. It’s a sign that your adult teeth are beginning to come in. However, a loose tooth as an adult is a different story. If your matured teeth are becoming loose, something is wrong. Allowing your teeth to become loose can result in further dental problems, such as a misaligned tooth. 

A misaligned or loose tooth can stem from a physical injury, gum disease or infection. Never ignore an injury like this, as it can result in a dislodged tooth. An emergency dentist can assess the tooth for any nerve or tissue damage or determine if gum disease is the cause. Seeing your dentist immediately after a misaligned tooth occurs can help to save the tooth from falling out. 

Damaged Crown or Filling 

If a temporary crown has become damaged or has fallen out, you should classify it as a dental emergency. However, if the pain isn’t severe and you are not able to make an emergency appointment, a temporary fix may include reinserting the crown back into its spot. First, clean the inside of the dental crown and tooth with toothpaste and use a dental adhesive or sugar-free gum to stick the crown back on. This method should hold you over until you can see your dentist. 

In the case of a broken or lost filling, you should act quickly.  If a damaged filling is causing you extreme pain and discomfort, schedule an appointment asap with your dentist to repair it. 

Bleeding Gums 

If your gums are swelling and bleeding while you brush or floss, it could be a sign of a gum infection. Seeing a dentist as soon as you notice the bleeding or swelling can help treat gum disease early on. Infections and gum disease can happen in stages. Depending on the stage, some patients may face tooth loss if the symptoms are untreated.  


A toothache is usually a warning sign that something is wrong. Some people may attempt to fight the pain, but the longer you put it off, the worse it can get. Various factors can play into a toothache, such as a cavity, tooth abscess, gum infection, or fracture. The only way to know the cause is to see a dentist, especially if the toothache is excruciatingly painful. Your best course of action is to receive emergency care if you have a Saskatoon dental emergency that needs attention. An emergency dentist will be able to assess the situation and provide the dental services you need. Remember, the most efficient way to avoid dental emergencies is to keep up with your oral care routine and schedule appointments with your dental clinic.