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What Counts as a Dental Emergency?

Emergency dental care is often the only way to save a tooth in case of a serious dental emergency. Your teeth are sensitive, and if you experience trauma, it’s important to get the care you need as soon as possible.

But how can you recognize a dental emergency? Some cases of dental emergency are obvious, such as a missing tooth, but others are not so clear-cut. Let’s take a look at the most common dental emergencies, so that you can better understand what steps you should take to seek an emergency dentist in Austin, TX..

1. Missing Tooth (Dental Avulsion)

Dental avulsion is among the most serious dental emergencies. For the best chance of restoring a healthy tooth, it must be replaced within 12-24 hours–the sooner the better.

If you have knocked out teeth, it’s important to recover them so that they can be re-inserted in your mouth. Rinse them with water, if necessary, and place them in a saline solution, or in milk to preserve moisture and keep them healthy until you can see an emergency dentist.

2. Loose Tooth

Loose teeth are also a serious medical emergency. Loose teeth, whether caused by trauma or other habits like tooth grinding or periodontal disease, should be addressed as soon as possible.

Failing to restore a loose tooth can lead to infection, tooth decay, bad breath, and a variety of other issues, so you should see an emergency dentist as soon as you can.

3. Broken, Cracked Or Chipped Tooth

Broken, cracked, and chipped teeth do qualify as dental emergencies. A broken tooth is extremely painful, and can expose the nerve pulp of the tooth. This can lead to severe pain, and even dental sepsis, a serious dental infection.

A cracked tooth or a severely chipped tooth can have similar symptoms. If you suspect you have a broken, cracked, or chipped tooth, seek a dental professional immediately.   The same goes for a loose crown that will not stay fixed to its tooth.

4. Oral Tissue Injuries

Most oral tissue injuries such as lacerations, tears, or puncture wounds to the lips, tongue, cheeks, and gums qualify as dental emergencies. Though the teeth may not be directly affected by these injuries, the overall health of your mouth could be at risk, and you may need a dentist or oral surgeon to treat your oral injuries.

5. Oral Pain And Extreme Sensitivity

Facial trauma is not the only cause of dental emergencies. If you are experiencing oral pain and extreme sensitivity, or a severe toothache, you could be suffering from a variety of dental emergencies, such as:

  • Advanced dental decay
  • Serious infection of the tooth
  • Gum or tooth abscess
  • Gum disease

If you are also experiencing sensitivity to hot and cold foods, or even the outside air, you should see a dentist as soon as you can. You could be suffering from any of these serious conditions, and you need to get emergency dental care ASAP.

Cynthia Graves DDS – Your Go-To Austin Dentist For Emergency Dental Care!

Austin dentist Dr. Cynthia Graves understands that you can’t predict dental emergencies. When you need care for a dental trauma, you need it fast! That’s why we offer flexible appointments and office hours so that we can take care of your needs, even in emergency situations!

Dr. Graves is dedicated to learning modern tooth restoration techniques, using advanced dental equipment, and applying state-of-the-art methods, all in a welcoming environment for patients. You’re in good hands with Dr. Graves!


So if you need emergency oral care from an Austin dentist, don’t wait. Contact us today at

(512) 258-8001, or visit us at 10418 Lake Creek Pkwy, Austin, TX 78750.

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