What are the Signs of a Dental Emergency?

For many of us, determining whether we are experiencing a dental emergency can be difficult. When it comes to your dental health, you need to understand what is normal and when to get to the dentist as soon as possible. This is crucial for saving your time and money as well as preventing discomfort.

Identifying a Dental Emergency

There are a few key ways to determine if your dental discomfort is a true dental emergency.

Visible Tooth Damage

One of the easiest ways to tell whether you are experiencing a dental emergency is by seeing visible signs of severe tooth damage. Small chips or hairline cracks in the tooth can be repaired during regular business hours by your regular dentist. However, large breaks require immediate emergency medical attention. If your teeth have large fractures that cause severe pain, it may indicate inner tissue or bone damage.


When an abrasion, lesion or another kind of injury occurs in the mouth, a pocket of pus called an abscess can form around the tooth. Bacteria will enter the wound and cause an infection. It often leads to very painful swelling around the jaw and mouth.

If you are experiencing mouth or jaw swelling, contacting or visiting an emergency dental professional is the best course of action. Leaving an abscess unattended can result in the infection spreading and worsening.

Bleeding and Gum Tenderness

A sign of bacterial infection and gum disease can be bleeding from the gums and gum tenderness. In these situations, getting help from an emergency dental professional is necessary.  Aching and bleeding gums are the most common signs of gum disease. When left untreated, this can result in tooth decay and even tooth loss. Keep your gums strong and healthy with proper brushing and flossing.

Headaches and Sensitivity

Infections, swelling and irritation in your mouth can cause headaches and irritation to occur in the rest of your head. This is similar to how certain sinus issues can cause toothaches.

If your headaches do not go away or become worse, the culprit may be lurking in your mouth. Often, headaches and sensitivity related to oral health require simple fixes. Your dentist may prescribe a mouth guard to avoid tooth grinding at night. To ensure fixes remain simple, address inexplicable head pain with your dental provider as soon as possible.

Metallic Taste

If you have fillings, a persistent metallic taste in the mouth can be a sign of cracked, loose or damaged fillings. In these cases, emergency care is required. This is not because the situation is dire but to prevent further damage or infection.

An open filling leaves a hole in a tooth that bacteria can enter and infect. This can result in much more serious conditions that require more involved and painful intervention. To prevent needing root canals, routinely have your fillings checked to see when they must be replaced.

Is your tooth pain a dental emergency?

If you are experiencing any of the issues above, your best option is to visit a dentist.

Call our office to see how we can treat your dental pain.

Request an appointment here: https://www.emergencydentistinorlando.com or call Plaza North Dentistry at (407) 337-1112 for an appointment in our Altamonte Springs office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Emergency Dentist.

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