Emergencies

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Dental Emergencies

In case of a dental emergency, your teeth and/or the tissues of the mouth that surround them need to receive proper care right away. As with any type of medical emergency, it's important to be aware, before you're actually in the situation, of what you can do to ensure the best outcome. As your local Columbia family dentist, Dr. Sahil Goyal suggests to do the following when faced with these different dental emergencies.

Traumatic Dental Injuries

Dental injury.

Knocked-out permanent tooth

If a permanent tooth is knocked out, you'll increase the chances of the tooth being saved if you quickly:

  • Pick up the tooth without touching the root.
  • Gently clean it off with water.
  • Put it back in its socket facing the correct way. If you can't replant it immediately, tuck it between the patient's cheek and gum, or carry it in a container of cold milk.
  • Hold it in place with gentle pressure as you make you way to our Columbia, MD dental office or the emergency room.

Moved or loosened tooth

For a more traumatic injury such as a tooth that has been moved or loosened, treatment needs to occur within six hours. However, if there is uncontrollable bleeding, go to the ER immediately. 

Chipped Tooth

If a tooth is chipped, try to find any pieces that have come off, as it might be possible to reattach them. Make an appointment to see Dr. Sahil Goyal DMD as soon as possible, and bring the pieces with you.

Tooth Pain

Tooth Pain.

Acute or persistent tooth pain always signals a need for an urgent visit to your Columbia, MD dentist. The most common cause of dental pain is tooth decay, a bacterial infection that can spread through many parts of the tooth, and even into the gum tissue.

Sometimes, tooth pain indicates that you may need a root canal treatment — a procedure that not only relieves the pain of an infection deep inside the tooth, but also can keep the tooth from having to be removed. Other times, pain may be caused by a loose filling or sensitive tooth.


If you are experiencing tooth pain, make an appointment to visit our dental office right away. Our expert dental team will be able to identify the cause of your pain and perform the best treatment.

Gum Emergencies

Injuries and infections involving the soft tissues of the mouth may require emergency treatment. The tissues of the gums, tongue, or cheek lining can be damaged by accidental bites, falls, sports injuries, and scalding liquids. These tissues may also suffer injury from foreign bodies becoming lodged below the gum line, which can develop painful and potentially serious abscesses —  a painful pus-filled sac caused by an infection. Abscesses require immediate attention at the dental office, so do not hesitate to call us at Columbia Family Dentist.


In case of a gum emergency:

  • Rinse any injury to the soft tissues of the mouth with dilute salt water.
  • Clear any visible debris — a foreign body lodged beneath the gum line can sometimes be gently worked out with dental floss or a toothpick. If this can't be accomplished easily, make a dental appointment to visit our Columbia office, so the area does not become damaged and/or infected.
  • Control any bleeding by pressing a clean, damp material to the area for 10-15 minutes. If this does not work, go to the emergency room immediately.

Orthodontic Emergencies

Although there can be discomfort associated with orthodontic treatment, there are only a few true orthodontic emergencies:

  • Trauma or injury to the teeth, face or mouth
  • Infection or swelling of the gums, mouth, or face
  • Severe, unmanageable discomfort or pain in the gums, mouth, or face

In any of these situations, seek immediate care from our dental office or emergency room — whichever is your best option. For loose, broken or irritating pieces of orthodontic hardware, please call us, your Columbia, MD dental specialists, for advice.

Contact Columbia Family Dentist

As your local Columbia, MD general and cosmetic dentist, we are happy to be of service to you in the case of any of these dental emergencies. If you are experiencing any of the above situations, please call our Columbia, MD office at 410-730-6020. We are happy to serve patients in Columbia, Ellicott, Laurel, Fulton, Clarksville, and the surrounding areas of Maryland to keep mouths healthy and smiles bright!

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