At Dougherty Dental, we know that not every visit to our office is planned. An accident or a slip or fall may result in the need for an emergency dental visit in La Jolla, California. Should that occasion arise, please contact our office at 858-454-2656 and we will schedule you for a visit with our Dentists, Paul E. Dougherty or Dr. Scott O. Szotko, as soon as possible. We will also give you instructions on what you can do to mitigate the problem until you can come to our office.

What is a dental emergency?

woman covering her mouth

Dental emergencies can include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • A lost or knocked out tooth
  • A tooth that has been partially knocked out
  • Severe pain in the teeth or oral tissue
  • A cracked or chipped tooth
  • A lost or damaged filling, crown or other type of dental work.
  • An injury to the lips, tongue or cheeks

Dental first aid

If a dental emergency occurs, contact our office as soon as possible. If the damage is severe or the bleeding cannot be stopped, you may need to go to the nearest emergency room before coming to see us.

  • Lost Tooth: Locate the tooth if you can and handle it only by the crown. Rinse it gently in cool water. After rinsing your mouth, try to gently fit it back into the socket. If it will not fit, submerge it in milk or a tooth preserving solution or hold it between your cheek and gum until you can come to the office. An ice pack can be used to reduce swelling.
  • Chipped or Broken Teeth: Rinse your mouth with a warm salt and water solution. And locate the pieces of tooth if you can. Apply gauze or a clean cloth to the affected area to stop any bleeding, and use an icepack if necessary to reduce swelling. A topical pain reliever or an over the counter medication can also be used for any discomfort.
  • Lost Dental Work: If you have lost a crown and can locate it, rinse it with warm water and try to slip it back into place. If you cannot do that, store it in a cool, safe place. For a lost filling, you can use a temporary filling material found in most drug stores. Dental cement can be used to hold your crown or filling in place. You can place dental cement on or in the tooth. However, you should never use any kind of household glue or adhesive. An over-the-counter pain reliever or clove oil can be used for any discomfort.
  • Toothaches: First, gently brush or floss the area to remove any debris. While a pain reliever can help, never place aspirin directly on the tooth.

Remember that first aid is just that. In any dental emergency, you should see our dentists as soon as possible.

Schedule your emergency appointment

Contact Dougherty Dental at 858-454-2656 if you experience a dental emergency in the greater San Diego area. We are here to help!