In Case of Emergency

Call our office at 408-782-6568. If it is after regular business hours, listen & dial the ER phone number to be connected to the clinical staff on call. You may also visit the hospital emergency room.

If you or a family member have experienced trauma to the mouth and have either loose or displaced teeth, take these steps to save the tooth/teeth until a dental professional can provide necessary emergency care:

What to Do in Common Emergency Scenarios

  • Attempt to reposition the tooth to its normal alignment using a very light finger pressure, but do not force the tooth.
  • Bite down so the tooth does not move. The dentist may be able to splint the tooth in place to the two healthy teeth next to the loose tooth.
  • Pick the tooth up by the crown, not by the root (the part of the tooth below the gum). Handling the root may damage the cells necessary for bone reattachment and hinder the replant.
  • Gently rinse the tooth in water to remove dirt. Do not scrub.
  • Place the clean tooth in the injured person’s mouth between the cheek and gum to keep it moist. It is important not to let the tooth dry out. If it is not possible to store the tooth in the mouth, wrap the tooth in a clean cloth or gauze and immerse in milk or saline solution.
  • Rinse mouth with warm water.
  • Use an ice pack or cold compress to reduce swelling.
  • Use ibuprofen, not aspirin, for pain. (Aspirin is an anti-coagulant, which may cause excessive bleeding in a dental emergency.)
  • Immediately get to your dentist, who will determine treatment based on how badly the tooth is broken. Only a dentist can tell how bad the break is.
  • Injuries to the inside of the mouth include tears, puncture wounds and lacerations to the cheek, lips or tongue. The wound should be cleaned right away with warm water, and the injured person taken to a hospital emergency room for the necessary care.
  • Bleeding from a tongue laceration can be reduced by pulling the tongue forward and using gauze to place pressure on the wound.

A First Aid Kit Should Include the Following Items for Dental Emergencies:

  • Dentist’s phone number
  • Clean handkerchief or cloth
  • Gauze
  • Small container with lid
  • Bottled water
  • Saline solution
  • Ibuprofen (not aspirin)