Dental Emergency Procedures

Being prepared for a dental emergency is no accident. It takes a little time and thought, but by knowing what to do before an accident happens, you may someday save a tooth; yours or someone else’s.


Rinse the mouth with warm water to clean it out. Use dental floss to remove any food that might be trapped between the teeth. Do not place aspirin on the aching tooth or gum tissues. See your dentist as soon as possible.

Problems With Braces and Retainers:

If a wire is causing irritation, cover the end with a small cotton ball, beeswax or a piece of gauze, until you can get to the dentist. If a wire gets stuck in the cheek, tongue or gum tissue, do not attempt to remove it. Go to your dentist immediately. If an appliance becomes loose or a piece of it breaks off, take the appliance and the piece and go to the dentist.

Knocked Out Tooth:

If the tooth is dirty, rinse it gently in running water. Do not scrub it or remove any attached tissue fragments. Gently insert and hold the tooth in its socket. If this is not possible, place the tooth in a cup of milk, or when milk is not available, in a cup of cool water. Go immediately to your dentist (within 30 minutes if possible). Don’t forget to bring the tooth!

Broken Tooth:

Gently clean dirt from the injured area with warm water. Place cold compresses on the face, in the area of the injured tooth to decrease swelling. Go to the dentist immediately.

Bitten Tongue or Lip:

Apply direct pressure to the bleeding area with a clean cloth. If tongue or Lip swelling is present, apply cold compresses. If bleeding does not stop, go to a hospital emergency room.

Objects Caught between Teeth:

Try to remove the object with floss. Guide the floss carefully to avoid cutting the gums. If you’re not successful in removing the object, go to the dentist. Do not try to remove the object with a sharp or pointed instrument.

Possible Broken Jaw:

Do not move the jaw. Secure the jaw in place by tying a handkerchief, necktie, or towel around the jaw and over the top of the head. If swelling is present, apply cold compresses. Go immediately to a hospital emergency room or call Dallas Emergency Dentist, Dr. Daftary.