What’s a Dental Emergency?

Simply put, a dental emergency is a dental problem that requires immediate attention. It’s usually accompanied by severe pain, persistent bleeding, signs of an infection, significant dental damage. At Elevated Smiles, we highly encourage our patients to contact us at the first sign of trouble. One of the most important factors to remember during a dental emergency is to stay calm and contact us as soon as possible. Some dental emergencies are highly reliant on time for proper recovery. To help you understand what we consider as a dental emergency, review the common problems listed below.

Knocked-Out/Dislodged Tooth

With enough force or pressure, a tooth can become dislodged or even knocked out. When this occurs, you need to seek medical attention from us immediately. If your tooth has become dislodged, don’t try to fix it yourself. Instead, hold a towel or gauze over the tooth to stop bleeding if there are any and then make your way to our dental office so we can help.

If your tooth becomes knocked out, start by finding your lost tooth. After carefully rinsing it off under water, place it in a cup filled with milk or your saliva to prevent it from drying out. Hold a towel or gauze over the tooth socket to stop the bleeding and contact us for help. We will meet you at our dental office where we will try to place your tooth back into your mouth. Replacing teeth is incredibly time-sensitive and the chances of success dramatically decrease with every minute. You must visit us as soon as possible for the highest chance of success.

Dental Abscess

Another dental emergency you might encounter is a dental abscess. Dental abscesses are small pockets filled with pus that can form on the gum line or near the root of a tooth. Usually, an abscess is caused by an untreated cavity or infected tooth. You may experience symptoms such as fever, pain, swelling, and tooth sensitivity. If the abscess ruptures, you will feel a rush of pain relief and a foul salty liquid in your mouth. If you think you have a dental abscess and you have a fever, please visit us as soon as possible for treatment.


If you experience a sudden toothache, there are several reasons why this might happen. First, try to brush and floss your teeth to dislodge anything that might be stuck. If your toothache persists, it also might be from amalgam fillings and temperature changes or pressure changes if you fly in an airplane. We recommend you schedule an appointment with us. If the pain grows worse or it’s accompanied by a fever, contact us for a dental emergency appointment.

Broken, Chipped or Cracked Tooth

If you damage your teeth in any way, they may be worse than they look. For instance, if you crack your tooth, it might not look bad but when we take an x-ray, the crack can reach the root and cause the need for a root canal. If you break, crack or chip your tooth in any way, please contact us for assistance so we can prevent the problem from growing worse.

How to Avoid A Dental Emergency

Aside from accidents, most dental emergencies can be avoided with the right preventive care. When you visit our Carlsbad emergency dentist every 6 months for a cleaning and checkup, we look for potential problems that might be occurring in your mouth. If we notice any, we will treat them early before they can have a chance to get worse and cause you significant pain or infection. Avoid dental emergencies by taking preventive dentistry seriously and taking the right precautionary measures including not chewing on hard objects, playing contact sports without a mouth guard, using your teeth as tools, or letting your nightly grinding and clenching habit go untreated.

Contact Us for Your Dental Emergency in Carlsbad, CA

If you’re experiencing a dental emergency in Carlsbad, CA, Dr. Luu at Elevated Smiles are here to help, day and night. Please contact our dental office by calling (760) 622-3010 to tend to your emergency needs.