5 Most Common Dental Emergencies That People Ignore

To some people, a medical emergency is a health condition that presents an immediate threat to life. However, dental emergencies are not like this, and most people tend to ignore them. How do you tell if an oral issue is of high importance and requires immediate examination and treatment? Even if a dental emergency is not life-threatening, it may significantly affect your quality of life, and you need to see a dentist at short notice.

Here are five most common dental emergencies that people take for granted:

1. Persistent Toothache

For some people, a toothache is a condition that comes and goes once one takes painkillers. However, the pain can be too severe that you can't ignore it. Tooth pain is an indication that nerves in the tooth or in the area surrounding the tooth are irritated. The three main causes of toothache are:

  • Trauma
  • Infection
  • Dental cavities

When tooth pain progressively gets worse, it is a dental emergency, and you need to see a dentist promptly.

2. Tooth Fracture

If you didn't know, fractured teeth are a leading cause of tooth loss in the United States. Some of the main causes of cracked teeth are:

  • Blows to the mouth
  • Teeth grinding
  • Falling
  • Biting hard foods
  • Age, especially for people above 50 years

Since broken teeth are painless, many people tend to ignore them. With time, the condition may worsen, causing pain and severe sensitivity. It may also limit your ability to chew your favorite hard foods.

3. Pericoronitis

Have you ever experienced inflammation of the gum around your third molar? Did you go to the hospital? Most people take the condition as a minor injury to the gum and rarely seek medical attention. 

However, this inflammation is known as pericoronitis and is common among people between the age of 20 and 29. If left untreated, the oral condition can cause severe swelling of the gum and pain that may significantly limit the swallowing of food.

4. Mouth Injury

Soft tissue injury is a common dental emergency that most people ignore. The mouth tissues that often get injured include the lips, gums, cheeks, and tongue. These tissues are highly rich in blood vessels, and a slight injury can cause excessive bleeding. 

If home remedies, such as rinsing salty water, can't help, you need to see a dentist urgently. In some cases, a severe injury may require stitching and a tetanus shot.

5. Loose Tooth

A loose tooth is attributed to injuries or dental infection. If one or a few of your teeth are loose, you need to seek immediate dental care before they eventually detach from the gums and you become toothless.

If you visit a dentist, they will perform tooth splinting, whereby the dental surgeon attaches a stabilizer in your gums and connects it with the nearby teeth, making the loose tooth firm again.


Some oral problems that you might ignore are dental emergencies that need urgent care. If left unaddressed, the conditions might translate to something major and even lead to teeth loss.