How to Handle the Most Common Dental Emergencies En Route to Our Office

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If you have ever experienced a dental emergency, you know the feeling of helplessness that ensues. You’re not sure what to do or where to go, and you want some help.

At Dentistry Optimized in Inver Grove Heights, we understand this feeling, and we are here to relieve your fears. If you call our office when an emergency occurs, Dr. Norman Coates or a member of our expert team will walk you step-by-step through exactly what you should do to ensure the best possible outcome.

In most cases, we will direct you to come to our office so we can treat you there. You will need to make sure your situation is stable first, though, so here are directions on how to handle some common dental emergencies on the way to our office.

Knocked-out tooth

Find the tooth and rinse the root off with water (don’t scrub it). Put it back into the socket if possible, but don’t force it. If the tooth won’t go in, put it in a small glass of milk (or a glass of water with table salt) and come straight to our office. You have the best chance of saving your tooth if Dr. Coates can reset it within about an hour.

Chipped or broken tooth

Find and save any pieces of tooth. Rinse them off and rinse your mouth with warm water. A cold compress in the area can keep swelling down, and applying a piece of gauze to the area can stop any bleeding that may be occuring. Get to your dentist’s office as soon as possible after the incident.


Rinse your mouth with warm water and use dental floss to make sure no food is stuck beside the tooth and causing you pain. Do not apply any painkillers next to the tooth – they may burn your gums. See your dentist as soon as you can.

Lost filling

If you lose a filling, stick a piece of sugarless gum into your cavity as a temporary solution until you can make it to the office. Don’t use regular gum — the sugar will cause you pain.

Lost crown

If your crown comes off, applying clove oil with a cotton swab can help ease the pain until your appointment. If it’s possible, you should coat the inner surface of the crown with toothpaste and slide it back over the tooth as a stopgap solution.

If you experience any of these or other common dental emergencies, feel free to contact the Dentistry Optimized office at any time by phone or request an appointment using our online scheduler.

Don’t stress during a dental emergency — we are here to help you. Just call us as soon as you can and we will be your guides to get you back to perfect dental health!