Beyond Toothaches: Lesser-Known Dental Emergencies You Shouldn’t Ignore

Beyond Toothaches: Lesser-Known Dental Emergencies You Shouldn’t Ignore

May 1, 2024

When we think of dental emergencies, often it’s the throbbing toothaches that come to mind. However, a whole spectrum of dental issues can arise unexpectedly, demanding urgent attention. In this article, we explore beyond the most common dental emergency scenarios to shed light on lesser-known dental emergencies to which you should pay attention.

Understanding Lesser-Known Dental Emergencies

What are lesser-known dental emergencies?

Lesser-known dental emergencies encompass urgent dental issues that may not grab immediate attention compared to severe toothaches or knocked-out teeth.

These emergencies include broken or chipped teeth, lost dental crowns or fillings, abscesses or infections, and tooth sensitivity to hot or cold. Despite not always appearing urgent, neglecting these problems can lead to further complications and discomfort.

Why are they often overlooked?

Lesser-known dental emergencies often slip under the radar due to less awareness or misunderstanding about what constitutes a dental emergency. Some individuals might dismiss symptoms like tooth sensitivity or a lost filling as minor issues that can wait for a regular dental check-up. Additionally, fear or anxiety about visiting the dentist might hinder individuals from seeking timely care for dental emergencies.

Importance of awareness

Raising awareness about lesser-known dental emergencies is critical to ensure individuals recognize the signs and seek prompt treatment when necessary.

Understanding the significance of addressing these issues early on can help patients avoid more extensive and costly dental procedures later. Moreover, increased awareness can alleviate anxiety about seeking dental care, encouraging more people to prioritize their oral health.

What Lesser-Known Dental Emergencies You Shouldn’t Ignore

  1. Broken or chipped teeth: A broken or chipped tooth should never be ignored, although not always immediately painful. Even minor damage to a tooth can weaken its structure, increasing the risk of further breakage or infection. If you experience a broken or chipped tooth, rinse your mouth with some warm water and apply a cold compress to reduce swelling. Contact a dentist’s office near you immediately for an evaluation and treatment.
  2. Lost dental crowns or fillings: Losing a dental crown or filling exposes the underlying tooth to bacteria and decay, leading to sensitivity and discomfort. Although tempting to ignore, seeing your dentist as soon as possible is crucial. Meanwhile, you can try to protect the exposed tooth with dental cement or sugar-free gum till the time you see a professional.
  3. Abscesses or infections: Dental abscesses, pockets of pus around the root of a tooth, often result from untreated decay or infection. Symptoms may include severe toothache, swelling, fever, and an unpleasant taste in the mouth. Ignoring an abscess can cause serious complications, such as infection spreading to other body parts. If you suspect an abscess, seek immediate dental care.
  4. Tooth sensitivity to hot or cold: While common, sudden or severe sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures may indicate underlying issues like tooth decay, infection, or nerve damage. If you experience persistent sensitivity, avoid hot or cold foods and beverages and schedule an appointment with your dentist for evaluation.

Recognizing the Signs and Symptoms

  1. How to identify each type of emergency
  • Broken or chipped teeth: Visible damage, sharp edges, or biting discomfort.
  • Lost dental crowns or fillings: Noticeable gaps and increased sensitivity to temperature changes.
  • Abscesses or infections: Swelling, redness, severe throbbing pain, fever.
  • Tooth sensitivity to hot or cold: Sudden or intense pain with hot or cold foods or beverages.
  1. Common symptoms to watch for
  • Persistent or severe tooth pain
  • Swelling or tenderness in gums or jaw
  • Difficulty chewing or biting
  • Prolonged sensitivity to hot or cold
  • Loose or knocked-out teeth
  1. When to seek immediate dental care: If experiencing any of the above symptoms or suspecting a dental emergency, seeking immediate care from an Edmonton emergency dentist is essential. Delaying treatment may worsen the problem, leading to further complications and discomfort. Early intervention preserves dental health and prevents extensive procedures.

Steps to Take in a Dental Emergency

  1. Immediate actions to take at home
  • Rinse mouth with warm water to clean and alleviate discomfort.
  • Apply a cold compress to lessen swelling and pain.
  • If a tooth is knocked out, try reinserting it into the socket or store it in milk or saliva until seeing a dentist.
  1. How to prepare for a dental emergency
  • Maintain an emergency dental kit with gauze, dental cement, and pain relievers.
  • Keep contact information for emergency dental services readily available.
  • Practice good oral hygiene to lessen the risk of emergencies.


Dental emergencies extend beyond toothaches and require prompt attention to prevent further complications. By understanding the signs and symptoms of lesser-known dental emergencies, you can take bold steps to protect your oral health. Remember, early intervention is crucial, so don’t hesitate to look for help from an emergency dentist if you experience any dental issues.

Don’t wait until it’s too late! Take charge of your dental health today.

Book an appointment with Viva Dental Wellness or The Snore Centre, your trusted Edmonton emergency dentist. Your smile deserves the best care possible. Contact us now, and let us help you maintain a healthy, radiant smile for years!

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