Successfully Manage a Dental Emergency

By its definition, an accident isn’t always possible to prevent. When it comes to your dental health, accidents typically mean an emergency, and prompt action may be necessary to save your smile, depending on the extent of accidental damage. Though strong and meant to withstand a great deal of pressure, teeth are peculiar in the fact that they cannot regenerate damaged tissue. For instance, if a bone breaks, it will heal itself, provided you set the broken bone correctly. Broken teeth, however, will remain broken unless treated, and in extreme cases, fast action can mean the difference between restoring and replacing the compromised tooth. Southlake dentist, Dr. Gregory Wright, is proud to provide emergency dental services to all of our patients and their families, and happy to provide tips for successfully weathering a dental emergency.  

Tips from Your Emergency Dentist


Toothaches generally indicate the presence of a dental health issue like tooth decay or gum disease. Cavities, the result of tooth decay, are small holes in your teeth that allow sensitivity to disturb the tooth’s nerves and blood vessels (housed at the center of the tooth). Gum disease causes gums to recede from the sensitive teeth roots they’re meant to protect. If your tooth suddenly starts hurting, there may be unnoticed dental damage or another physical disturbance. Rinse your mouth thoroughly with warm water, using dental floss to carefully dislodge anything stuck between your teeth. If discomfort persists, call us as soon as possible to schedule an examination with Dr. Wright and determine the cause of your toothache.

Chipped or broken tooth

Even if the damage seems severe, a broken or chipped tooth can typically be saved with a restorative procedure, such as a dental crown. Collect the pieces of the broken tooth, if possible, and rinse them off gently with warm water. If bleeding occurs, stem it by biting softly on a clean, moist piece of gauze until the bleeding stops. Apply a cold compress or ice pack to the side of the mouth to reduce swelling and relieve discomfort, and call us immediately to schedule an emergency visit.

Knocked out (avulsed) tooth

If trauma is significant enough, the force can damage the periodontal ligaments that hold teeth securely in their sockets, causing the tooth to fall out. Collect the tooth immediately, handling only the crown (top part). While rinsing it off, take care not to scrub away any fibers, which may prove necessary for replanting the tooth. Try to fit the tooth back in its socket and hold in place by biting down gently. If the tooth doesn’t fit, don’t force it. Instead, place it in a small container of milk until you reach our office. If treatment is sought within the hour, then Dr. Wright may be able to replant the tooth without having to replace it with a dental prosthesis.

About Gregory Wright, DDS:

As a native Texan, Dr. Gregory Wright opened his private practice in Southlake, TX in 1992. He is happily accepting new patients from Southlake, Grapevine, Keller, Trophy Club, Colleyville, and all surrounding communities. To schedule an appointment with your cosmetic dentist, call our office today at (817) 481-7999.