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Dental Emergencies

Dental Emergencies: What You Should Know

Many patients often do not know what constitutes a dental emergency. However, it is important for people to understand that a dental emergency is classified as a dental issue that requires urgent care to stop persistent bleeding, to save a tooth, or to preserve gum and jaw function.

In some circumstances, there are often signs leading up to the emergency that indicate its severity. You need to know these signs and when it is time to act. But if an emergency situation arises, there are also steps you should be prepared to take. This article offers valuable information on dental emergencies and explains what can be done to get you the attention and care you need from an emergency dentist.

Signs of a Looming Dental Emergency

Many different symptoms can indicate an impending dental emergency. These can include persistent headaches, a loose tooth, swollen gums or jaw, severe toothache, a sore that won’t heal, and numbness in the mouth.

Persistent Headaches

Many factors can trigger headaches. It is important to note that pain felt in your head or tooth is sensed by the trigeminal nerve in the head. Your head and jaw are connected, and so, any pain ignited in the jaw or its muscles can cause a headache. If you notice that your head is hurting for days or weeks without cessation, there could be an oral emergency present.

Loose Tooth

If you have a loose tooth as an adult, this is an indication of an underlying issue. It could indicate an injury sustained by the tooth, or it could imply that an infection is present. If dismissed, the problem can escalate, and the tooth may fall out. An oral exam or an X-ray must be performed to identify the issue, as periodontal disease or oral cancer can be the root of the problem.

Swollen Gums or Jaw

Inflammation of the gums or the jaw is a clear indication that something is amiss, especially if a fever or trouble breathing is also apparent. That is a sign of an oral infection in need of immediate care. Do not ignore the symptoms even if you aren’t experiencing pain.

Numbness of Tooth

A complete lack of tooth sensation or numbness is a sign that something is wrong. If you were experiencing a toothache before but decided to ignore it and no longer feel anything, it is likely that the infection causing the ache spread to the root of your tooth.

Non-Healing Sore

From time to time we encounter a sore or burn in our mouths whether it was from eating something extremely hot or scraping the roof of our mouths with something we ate. However, the mouth heals quite fast. So, if a sore lingers and remains painful longer than it should, getting an emergency dentist to check it is ideal.

Types of Dental Emergencies

Sometimes, a dental emergency can occur suddenly with or without the presence of any symptoms. However, when they arise, receiving professional care is necessary. Here are some reasons to see an emergency dentist.

Unexpected Tooth Loss

If a tooth falls out abruptly whether sudden or due to an accident, an emergency dentist must be seen right away. If it has occurred to due to physical trauma, it is possible that you may have sustained nerve or tissue damage. If for any other reason, such as oral cancer, a dentist will act quickly to evaluate the issue and provide the proper treatment.

Fractured Tooth

Broken or damaged teeth can affect your oral health. If left alone they can increase in size and lead to painful toothaches and eventually infections. Fixing teeth right away after they are damaged is pivotal.

A Persistent Toothache

A toothache is your mouth’s way of informing you that there is a problem. When this occurs, you endure sharp or severe pain in your mouth. Tooth pain can imply that there is a cavity resulting from tooth decay, or that you are suffering from severe gum disease. If pain persists and is unbearable, seeing your dentist immediately is your best course of action.


An abscess is a pocket of pus that forms as the result of an infection in the tooth. This physical symptom is an indication that the root of the tooth has been adversely affected by the disease. It is painful, and immediate care is required to drain the abscess and apply the required treatment.

When to Call the Dentist About a Dental Emergency

Other dental issues that necessitate immediate care include a lost filling, lodged items between teeth, and injuries or puncture wounds to the mouth, tongue, lips, or cheeks. Overall, if any problem arises that requires the need to stop persistent bleeding, alleviate acute pain, or rescue a broken or fractured tooth, it is a dental emergency, and you must call an emergency dentist.

Centre Dentaire Pierrefonds offers urgent care to its customers at all times in the West Island. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you are experiencing symptoms or toothache that require our immediate attention.

Dr. Jean-Pierre Bedirian

Dr. Jean-Pierre Bedirian, B.Sc., DDS, owner of Centre Dentaire Pierrefonds, is a dental surgeon with more than two decades of experience in dental surgery. A graduate of McGill University, Dr. Bedirian obtained his Bachelor of Science in 1990, followed by a Doctor of Dental Surgery in 1994 and a multidisciplinary general residency at the Jewish General Hospital in 1995.

Dr. Bedirian is an expert in specialized dental care such as gum grafting, cosmetic dentistry and dental implants. His mission is to prevent tooth loss due to dental disease and oral cancer. As a compassionate leader, Dr. Bedirian is proud to lead a skilled interdisciplinary team that caters to the dental needs of families and individuals in the West Island of Montreal.

In addition to his clinical and educational roles, Dr. Bedirian is actively involved in various dental professional associations (see dedicated section), contributing to his field and ensuring he stays abreast of the latest advances in dental care. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for daily updates on Dr Bedirian’s dental clinic, news and educational articles.

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