Common Dental Emergencies

Most people know what to do when an emergency arises. However, many patients don’t know what to do when they’re eating their favorite food and a tooth breaks. Most people don’t know how to handle a cracked, fractured, or even knocked-out tooth. For this reason, Johns Family Dentistry wants to help patients stay prepared in case an emergency happens.


Additionally, Dr. Johns will do everything he can to see you the same day, so the first steps should always be to schedule an emergency appointment. Until you arrive, here’s what you should do.


An avulsed tooth is always considered a dental emergency. In order to save the tooth and increase the chance of a successful implantation, it’s essential that you get to the dentist as soon as possible. Until then, take note of the following steps:  First, find the tooth. Once found, only pick it up by the top, known as the crown. Touching the root will reduce the tooth’s ability to be reimplanted.  Then, rinse any dirt or debris off the tooth, making sure to leave any tissue still attached to the root.  Finally, attempt to place the tooth back into the socket the same way it was facing. This will help preserve the tooth until you get to your dentist. If you aren’t comfortable doing this, place the tooth into a container of milk, saline solution, saltwater, or saliva if none of these liquids are available.


If you only chip your tooth cosmetically and there’s no pain, chances are you can wait until Johns Family Dentistry is open during normal business hours. However, a large crack or a crack that extends below the gumline needs to be addressed by a dentist right away. If you have pain, take an over-the-counter painkiller to alleviate it until your dentist visit.  Avoid applying pressure to the affected tooth.


If you wake up to tooth pain with no explanation, it could be a sign of significant tooth decay, an infection or abscess, or damage that resulted from teeth grinding. Besides taking Advil or Motrin, you’ll need to visit your dentist so he can determine the cause.  If the pain is lingering or not consistent, take note of when the pain occurs to help your dentist create a more accurate diagnosis.

Regardless of the emergency you’re experiencing, you don’t have to wait until tomorrow to address it.  Johns Family Dentistry in Puyallup is more than likely able to see you the same day to treat your case.  The sooner you get your case treated, the better your outcome will be.  Schedule an appointment with Dr. Johns today to get treated!