Emergency Instructions

Emergency Instructions

If your dental emergency occurs after hours please call our office at 540-450-2100 and our voicemail will provide you with the appropriate contact numbers.

If you have dental discomfort on a weekday, we encourage you to call us as soon as possible, so we will be better able to meet your needs. We offer 24/7 emergency care for current patients of record.
Please find some helpful instructions below for various dental emergencies.

Tooth that is knocked completely out of the Mouth

If the person has other injuries that are more life threatening (e.g. concussion, bleeding, trauma), call 911 immediately and get them to emergency services. If the person who has lost their tooth is aware, has no other issues that take precedence, then call us immediately and follow these instructions:

    • Find the tooth that was knocked out.
    • Do not touch the root(s) of the tooth; Pick the tooth up by the crown (the portion of tooth that you normally see in a smile)

Gently rinse the tooth; DO NOT Touch the root (s) of the tooth or scrub the tooth so as to not remove any of the tissue attached to it.

  • If possible you will want to place the tooth back in the socket (the area where the tooth came out) hold it gently and if placed in bite together to keep it held in and see us as immediately. If you are unable to get the tooth in place in the socket site or you feel uncomfortable doing this place the tooth in a container of milk (if no milk use water instead, do not use any carbonated drinks, or flavored waters). The long term success depends on timing; in general you want the tooth put back in place within 60 min max.
  • Get to the dentist immediately with the tooth in order to try to save the tooth or get it re-implanted. If too much time passes it will not be able to be re-implanted and/or the bone and tissue surrounding the tooth will not grow back in correctly.
  • The tooth will need to be placed back in the socket within an hour.

Tooth that is knocked out of alignment

A tooth that is pushed in, out, or towards the front or back need to be treated by us. The tooth, if left out of alignment, will with time become more and more difficult to reposition back to its original location due to inflammation. Most of the time we need to reposition the tooth back into alignment and splint it in place for a few weeks. A root canal might also be necessary in the future. It is ideal to call us and get the tooth repositioned as soon as possible – ideally within a few hours.

Cracked Tooth/Broken Tooth

Teeth that are broken or fractured may be sensitive to touch, hot and cold and should be treated as soon as possible. However, treatment 12 hours after the crown fracture will not affect long-term outcomes. Restoration requires local anesthetic and dental treatment. Some types of fractures can expose the nerve of the tooth. This will cause significant pain and the tooth will need root canal treatment or extraction.

Permanent Crown dislodged

If your crown comes off please see us within the next couple of days to avoid experiencing sensitivity. Please look for your crown or bridge and bring it to your appointment. Sometimes crowns can be re-cemented on if there is no cavity or broken tooth. Please do not attempt to glue the crown on yourself. This could make it impossible for us to get the crown on correctly without cutting it.

Temporary Crown Dislodged

If your temporary crown comes off, please try to save it if possible. Your tooth may be sensitive if the temporary crown comes off. If you are unable to see us to have the temporary crown placed back on, or if you are out of town, you can place the temporary crown back on using toothpaste until you can see us. Be very careful so as to not swallow the temporary crown. Do not super glue a temporary crown on or it may require going through the process of impressions and waiting for a new final crown to be made again. It is ideal to tell your dentist and get the temporary crown placed back onto the tooth in order to keep teeth from shifting. Going 1-3 days without a temporary crown will not harm the tooth but the tooth may be sensitive and it is ideal to put the temporary crown back on as soon as possible in order to keep teeth from shifting and allowing the final crown to have the best fit possible.

Swelling

If you have dental swelling call us to set up an appointment as soon as possible – ideally the same day. If the swelling is severe and is causing your airway to be obstructed or difficulty breathing you need to go to the emergency room right away. If the swelling is not severe rinse your mouth with warm salt water and put a cold compress on the area that is swelled until you can see us.