Nobody likes getting a toothache. Even a minor toothache is enough to get you quickly searching for an “emergency dental clinic near me” because you want it addressed as soon as possible.  

However, you may have also experienced rushing to an emergency dental clinic only to be told yours is not an emergency! So the next time you’re experiencing tooth pain, you might wonder if what you’re going through is reason enough to seek an emergency dentist. 

It might be hard to distinguish between an emergency dental situation and one that can wait for a scheduled appointment. But in this post, Dental First aims to provide you with some information that can help you decide whether you should immediately go to a dentist or not:

Is Dental Pain an Emergency?

Dental pain can be incredibly debilitating, making it hard to eat, sleep, or even concentrate on anything else. And while it’s often tempting to just grit your teeth and hope the pain goes away, it’s important to know when dental pain is an emergency that requires immediate treatment. 

If you’re experiencing severe dental pain, the first thing you should do is contact your dentist. Many dentists have emergency lines or after-hours numbers that you can call, and they can help you determine whether or not you need to be seen immediately.

In general, dental pain is not an emergency unless it is accompanied by other symptoms, such as:

  • Swelling in your face or jaw
  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • A fever
  • Severe bleeding
  • Trauma to the teeth or jaw

If you are experiencing these symptoms along with your dental pain, it’s imperative to seek medical attention immediately. You may have to go to the emergency room or see a dentist immediately.

In some cases, dental pain can be a sign of a more serious underlying condition, such as an infection. If you do have a history of medical conditions that put you at risk for infections, such as diabetes, it’s essential to be extra cautious and seek treatment at the first sign of dental pain.

Dental pain can be highly uncomfortable, but it’s important to remember that it’s usually not an emergency. However, if you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, you must seek medical attention immediately. 

What To Do If Your Dental Pain Is Not an Emergency

If you’re experiencing dental pain, it’s important to determine whether or not it’s an emergency. While some dental pain can be managed at home, other types may require immediate attention from a dentist.

If your dental pain is severe and/or accompanied by other symptoms like fever, swelling, or bleeding, then it’s likely an emergency, and you should seek dental care right away. However, if your pain is more mild and you don’t have any other concerning symptoms, you may be able to manage it at home until you can see a dentist.

There are simple things you can do to help ease dental pain at home, including taking over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen, using a cold compress to reduce swelling, and practicing good oral hygiene. If home remedies don’t seem to be helping, or if your pain is getting worse, then it’s time to see a dentist.


Don’t hesitate to seek dental care if you’re experiencing pain. While some dental problems can be fixed at home, others may require professional treatment. If you’re uncertain whether or not your pain is worth a trip to an emergency dental clinic, it’s always better to err on the side of caution and go see a dentist. 

Dental First offers reliable services from an emergency dentist in Troy. If you are experiencing severe toothaches, uncontrolled bleeding of gums, tooth loss due to trauma, or any other concern that requires immediate attention, don’t hesitate to visit our emergency dental clinic.