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How to Deal With Common Dental Emergencies and First Aid

Dental Emergencies and First Aid

Imagine biting into your favorite meal and suddenly feeling that sharp, unmistakable pain that indicates something’s amiss with your tooth. Dental emergencies can strike when we least expect them, turning simple pleasures into moments of distress. Whether you’re faced with a chipped tooth, gum injury, or a wayward popcorn kernel, knowing how to react swiftly can make all the difference.

In this blog post, we’re going to arm you with essential knowledge on how to handle these common dental mishaps. By the end, you’ll be equipped with practical first-aid tips to manage and minimise potential damage, ensuring you can keep that radiant, long-lasting smile intact even in the face of adversity.


How to Deal With Common Dental Emergencies and First Aid

When confronting common dental emergencies, immediate actions like rinsing with salty water for a toothache, placing a knocked-out tooth in milk, or applying pressure after tooth extraction can be critical first aid steps in mitigating damage and pain.

In our lives, there are times when unforeseen dental emergencies occur. Whether it’s the acute discomfort of a toothache caused by tooth decay or the shock of a knocked-out tooth, immediate action is crucial.

If a broken tooth leaves tooth fragments, it’s vital to locate the broken piece of tooth and store it safely, possibly in a glass of milk. Tooth sensitivity could point to a lost filling or crown exposing your vulnerable tooth enamel. Meanwhile, an abscess can signify gum disease or a deeper bacterial infection, demanding swift dental care to prevent permanent damage.

When bleeding occurs after a tooth extraction, pressure applied until the bleeding stops is the key. If you’re troubled by broken orthodontics, avoid causing more wounds in your mouth and reach out to an emergency dentist.

Always remember, in cases of extreme pain, it’s beneficial to rinse your mouth with water, preferably salty water for tooth pain or cold water for loose teeth. Storing a knocked-out adult tooth with milk can aid in preserving it until an emergency appointment.

And always, when faced with these common emergencies, ensure to keep any tooth fragments or permanent teeth in their original position if possible, and seek out immediate professional guidance to prevent oral infections and long-lasting damage.


A toothache is one of the most common dental emergencies.

Various factors, including a cavity, gum infection, or injury, can cause it. You can rinse your mouth with warm water and use over-the-counter pain medication to alleviate discomfort. Avoid placing aspirin directly on the tooth or gum, as it can burn the tissue. If the pain persists, see a dentist as soon as possible.


Knocked-out Tooth

If you have a tooth knocked out due to an injury, try to find it and handle it by the crown (the part usually visible in the mouth) rather than the root.

Rinse the tooth gently with water and try to reinsert it into the socket if possible. If that is not possible, keep the tooth moist by placing it in milk or inside your cheek.

Seek dental attention immediately, as the chances of successful reimplantation decrease the longer the tooth is out of the socket.


Broken Tooth

A broken tooth can be caused by trauma or biting down on something hard.

If you have a fractured tooth, rinse your mouth with warm water and apply a cold compress to the outside of your mouth to reduce swelling. Avoid biting down on the broken tooth and see a dentist as soon as possible.

An experienced emergency dentist can repair the tooth and prevent further damage.

Lost Filling or Crown

A lost filling or crown can expose the tooth to decay further and damage.

If you have a lost filling or crown, save the pieces if possible and cover the exposed area with sugarless gum or over-the-counter dental cement. Contact a dentist for emergency appointment as soon as possible to have the filling or crown replaced.


An abscess is a painful infection at the root of a tooth or gums.

It can cause fever, swelling, and difficulty swallowing. If you have an abscess, rinse your mouth with warm salt water, take an over the counter pain medication, and see a dentist immediately. A spot left untreated can spread and cause more severe health problems.

Bleeding After Tooth Extraction

Bleeding after a tooth extraction is standard and usually stops within a few hours.

To control the bleeding, bite on a gauze pad placed over the extraction site for about 30 minutes. If the bleeding does not stop, see a dentist.

Broken Orthodontics

Broken orthodontics are just about everyone’s worst nightmare.

No matter how unsightly braces can be, they are built for all kinds of wear and tear, everything from chewing to talking. But even then, they can become damaged and poke your cheeks and gums. While this often leads to discomfort, it can slow down or reverse progress in straightening and aligning teeth.

Should you find yourself in this scenario, you can try manipulating the broken wire into a more comfortable position. Cover the exposed end with a small cotton ball, orthodontic wax, or gauze if you cannot do this.

Whatever you do, please don’t cut the wire to avoid swallowing it. It is best practice to contact an orthodontist as soon as possible if your orthodontic hardware becomes damaged.



Proper first aid can help alleviate discomfort and prevent complications in a dental emergency. However, seeing a dentist or dental professional as soon as possible is essential for proper dental treatment. A dentist can accurately diagnose the problem and provide the necessary care to resolve the issue. To prevent dental emergencies, it is also essential to practice good oral hygiene, including brushing and flossing daily and visiting the dentist regularly.

Dental emergencies can be stressful and painful experiences that require immediate attention. Knowing how to handle common dental emergencies and practicing good oral hygiene can help prevent these situations and ensure you get the proper care you need. If you are experiencing a dental emergency, don’t hesitate to seek professional treatment to alleviate discomfort and prevent further complications.


Ready to Restore Your Healthy Smile? Contact Odin House Dental Surgery

Over the last two decades, Odin House Dental Surgery has been proud to serve the suburb of Innaloo and has grown to include ten dentists, three oral health therapists, and ten support staff. We have eight surgery rooms, a sterilisation room, a laboratory (where we make your mouthguards, whitening trays, and models), and two waiting rooms, including a small play area for children. We also have a unique “special room” complete with a massage chair, large screen TV, and even X Box!

In addition to our advanced facilities, our clinic passionately prioritises patient comfort and satisfaction. Our staff undergoes continuous training, ensuring they’re updated with the latest dental techniques. With our patient-first approach, we’ve managed to build lasting relationships, turning one-time visitors into lifelong patients. It’s not just about fixing teeth; it’s about fostering trust and ensuring you always leave with a smile.

Our dentists are all members of the Australian Dental Association and are local to Perth, so it would be no surprise if you have seen us out and about in the community. If you’re ready to experience top-quality dental care, don’t hesitate to give us a call at (08) 9468 7182. We’re here to guide you to a brighter, healthier smile.

Odin House Dental Surgery
Suite 3/8 Odin Rd
Innaloo WA 6018

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