Emergency Dental Care:  Accidents Happen!

So, imagine if you will, sitting down to enjoy a nice meal with family, or perhaps even playing a friendly game of catch in the backyard, when suddenly it happens! Maybe you take your eye off the ball for just a moment, or maybe you just bite into something that’s a bit too hard. Regardless the result is always the same; the crunching sensation in your mouth, followed by a sharp, stinging pain that seems to reverberate throughout your body. Sure enough, you have just broken a tooth and you need emergency dental care!

In situations such as this, obviously options are limited (particularly on weekends or holidays) and therefore it may seem as though you’re in quite a pickle! Fortunately, we at Premier Dental understand that this sort of thing can happen, and are more than willing to help you in your time of need. Providing emergency dental care is a service we take great pride in providing our patients with, we all know accidents happen so let us help you out!

Why Emergency Dental Care Is Needed

When it comes to providing emergency dental care, the two primary reasons for doing so typically are; restorative and cosmetic. The purpose for restorative emergency dental care is simply to get you out of pain as quickly as possible, as the intensity of the pain can be relatively severe depending on the damage. While time is certainly of the essence in restorative emergency dental care. However, as its name implies, cosmetic dental is based on appearance. Although it may sound frivolous, cosmetic dentistry can actually be quite important; perhaps you have an important presentation or meeting to attend, or your child has a class photo, your smile is important.

Emergency Dental Care: What If It Happens To You?

4 Steps to Follow:

While surely the reasons for emergency dental care may sound reasonable in theory, often people assume that they will never need such a service; that is until it happens to them!

So hypothetically speaking, ask yourself: If you truly found yourself faced with such a crisis as a broken tooth what should you do?

  1. Find the tooth: For the first step in this scenario, you need to locate the broken tooth (or teeth) to assess the severity of the damage. When a tooth is broken, there is a possibility that tooth might have broken off in one piece, or has broken into fragments of several pieces. (Remember this can include the root of the tooth as well) Therefore finding and gathering the remains of the tooth is essential, as it may still be possible to re-implant it.
  2. Clean and save the tooth: Obviously if your tooth has gathered any dirt or debris, it would be a good idea to rinse and clean the broken tooth, while at the same time being careful as to not accidently wash away any tooth fragments. Once cleaned and gathered, to safely transport the tooth, place it in a small sealed container filled with milk, as the milk keeps the tooth from drying out and the root surface from swelling up.
  3. Make the call: At Premier Dental, we do not have an after-hour hotline; therefore all calls go directly to Dr. Caye’s cell phone instead! This allows Dr. Caye to be easily accessible to patients in the instance of an emergency. Remember, as the more time passes, the less likely your tooth can be re-implanted successfully.
  4. Find a driver: If you are in severe pain and are unsure about driving to our dental office, please do not try to! Acquiring the assistance of a friend or family member may be a necessary next step. While breaking a tooth is certainly a problem, it is absolutely not a problem worth the risk of causing any potential harm to yourself or others, by attempting to give yourself a ride.

Emergency Dental Care: Other Things to Keep in Mind!

Although breaking a tooth is typically the first thing that comes to mind, emergency dental care is really something of an umbrella term, there are numerous other situations that can occur as well. While certainly the best course of action is always to call and make your emergency appointment, below are some of these potential issues as well as some additional tips and remedies that may prove useful in the given situation.

  1. Broken or lost crown: If a permanent or temporary dental crown were to break or just simply fall off, it may be a good initial idea to clean the area. This can be achieved by brushing and rinsing the area with warm salt water, if its not too sensitive. Additionally, if you are unable to make an emergency appointment, placing toothpaste or denture cream within the crown may suffice as a temporary solution.
  2. Severe toothache: Although often simply a minor nuisance, sometimes a plain old toothache can be painful enough to almost completely incapacitate a person, thus requiring immediate attention. Much like the previous scenario, rinsing and cleaning your mouth with warm saltwater is generally a smart first step, followed by gently brushing or flossing around the afflicted area. While sometimes Ibuprofen or basic over the counter pain medications may help temporarily alleviate any discomfort, you should still consider calling and scheduling a dental appointment as this issue may continue.
  3. If an issue occurs out of town: Perhaps one the most difficult situations would be having a dental emergency while on vacation or out of town. If you are for whatever reason unable to access our office, you may try contacting a local dentist or visiting the emergency room.

Emergency Dental Care: Expect the Unexpected

As stated earlier, sometimes accidents just happen and there’s just no telling when! However, because of life’s occasionally unpredictable nature, Dr. Caye and his friendly staff at Premier Dental are ready for almost anything! So remember, if you find your plans interrupted by an unexpected and painful dilemma like a broken tooth, give us a call!


Dr. Stephan Caye and his friendly, experienced team at Premier Dental offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the Lee’s Summit, MO area. Our office is conveniently located off of Highway 50 and SE Blue Parkway. We offer appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At Premier Dental, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to specialty procedures, including dental implants, dentures, endodontic or root canal treatment, teeth whitening, cosmetic dentistry, emergency dental care and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Please call us at (816) 600-6330 to schedule an appointment.