What are dental danger signs?

Danger signs of oral and dental problems include but are certainly not limited to the following:

  • bad breath
  • bleeding gums
  • loose teeth
  • holes in teeth
  • swelling
  • sensitivity to temperature
  • pain on biting
  • food collecting between teeth
  • chipping of teeth
  • jaw pain
  • crowded teeth
  • plaque and tartar accumulation
  • sores that do not heal on tongue, cheeks and other areas of mouth 

Many problems that reach the point of danger signs can be avoided by having regular periodic dental examinations. It is always a good idea not to wait till it hurts.

Dental danger signs could include bleeding, trauma to the teeth or mouth, severe toothaches or other mouth/tongue pain, infections, white colored lumps, loose teeth. All of these require immediate dental visits.

You shouldn't wait before you're in pain to see a dentist. By seeing your dentist regularly, you can avoid unnecessary pain or lasting damage. Your dentist can help in detecting early warning signs and offer treatment. Practicing good oral health is also key to prevention, including brushing your teeth twice a day.
Dental danger signs that mean you should see a dentist soon include:
  • Pain when biting or eating something very cold or hot
  • Toothache
  • Redness or swelling around a tooth or in your jaw or face
  • Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
  • Bad breath (halitosis)
  • Broken, chipped, or loose teeth
  • Sores inside your mouth
  • Creamy white coating in your mouth
The problem with teeth, as well as many other body systems, is that pain is the poorest way to know if you have a problem or not. Ask anyone who has had cancer or a heart attack if they had pain at the onset of the cancer's growth or the clogging of the arteries. When it comes to teeth, once you can recognize a problem, in most cases the disease has had ample opportunity to worsen from a simple fix to a more complex and usually costly fix.

Good daily care of your mouth and regular check-ups by a dentist is your best guard to staying healthy and ultimately saving money
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
What are signs you need to see a dentist pronto? Bleeding, bad breath (you may need a partner to affirm this -- they say a skunk doesn't smell his own odor, but then how do we verify this?), an itchy feeling in the gums, a change in gum color, or increased space between the teeth are all prime examples.
YOU: Being Beautiful: The Owner's Manual to Inner and Outer Beauty

More About this Book

YOU: Being Beautiful: The Owner's Manual to Inner and Outer Beauty

Most people think that beauty revolves around such things as lipstick, sweet eyes, or skinny jeans -- all those things that we can see (and obsess over) in the mirror. But the fact is that beauty...

Continue Learning about Dental Emergency

How to Deal with 4 Common Dental Emergencies
How to Deal with 4 Common Dental Emergencies
Whether your idea of vacation fun is sun and sandcastles, city slicking or sleeping under the stars, dental emergencies can happen anywhere. Here’s ho...
Read More
Can I prevent my child swimmer from having a dental emergency?
Teach your children to follow the rules of the pool: No running near the swimming pool No divi...
More Answers
Who is most at-risk for dental trauma?
Children are the most at-risk population for dental emergencies. Up to 25% of 12-year-olds have inju...
More Answers
What are some causes of dental emergencies?
Dental emergencies are often caused by accidents and injuries. Some sports create risk of jaw or...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.