Accidents happen, and knowing what to do when one occurs can mean the difference between saving and losing a tooth.
Kids are prone to accidents. It’s a part of growing up. That doesn’t make them any less traumatic, though – both for you and your child. Knowing what to do in those situations can help give you some peace of mind.
Here are some steps to take when faced with a dental emergency.
If your child falls or gets hit in the face and a permanent/adult tooth pops out, make sure to keep it moist at all times. If possible, try placing the tooth back in the socket. You’ll want to do this after gently rinsing any debris off the tooth. Also, make sure not to touch the root of the tooth.
If placing it back in the socket is not possible, place the tooth in between your child’s cheek and gums or in a glass of milk. Another option is to get a tooth preservation product with the ADA seal from your local pharmacy.
Then, call our office as soon as possible!
Your child can crack a tooth while playing sports or biting down on something hard (chicken bone, uncooked grain of rice, hard candy, a fork, etc.). Regular ice chewing can also lead to cracking over time. For a cracked tooth, rinse the mouth out with warm water. Put a cold compress on your child’s face to reduce swelling.
It’s a scary moment for a parent when your child bites down on their tongue or lip hard enough that it causes bleeding. Even if they don’t bleed, they can still have a very sore lip, tongue, or cheek that will start to swell. Clean the area gently with water and apply a cold compress.
If your child has a toothache, avoid putting aspirin on the tooth or gum tissue as it will irritate the tissue. Instead, rinse their mouth with warm water and floss their teeth gently to remove any debris. Avoid anything that aggravates the tooth (hot or cold foods/drinks). Use a cold compress if necessary.
If your child has a kernel of popcorn or some other debris in their gums, avoid attempting to remove it with something sharp. Instead, try to floss it out for them or gently use a rubber tip instrument to clean around the gum line. Once the object has been removed, have your child rinse with warm salt water to help reduce gum swelling and tenderness.
In each of these situations, it is imperative that you call us as soon as possible. We will schedule an emergency visit to quickly take care of your child’s dental issue.
In addition to treating general dental emergencies, our orthodontic team also treats orthodontic emergencies, including:
What does it take to remedy an orthodontic emergency? We can:
We can also provide you with recommendations that can help make the orthodontic experience as comfortable as possible, like rinsing with warm salt water for a few days after getting an adjustment.
Accident prevention checklist:
Dr. Kristi Seibel earned her DMD degree from Tufts University School of Dental Medicine in Boston. After working some years as a general dentist, Dr. Seibel returned to Tufts to specialize in her first love, pediatric dentistry. Her training included treating children, young adults, and special needs patients at New England Medical Center, the Cotting School, and Brookline Dept. of Health Dental Clinic.
Dr. Thaker is passionate about providing the highest quality of dental care to children in the most comfortable atmosphere possible. Dr. Thaker has continued her education by taking several courses throughout the years to stay informed about the newest and most proven research and developments in the field of pediatric dentistry.
If your child experiences dental discomfort, call us as soon as possible. No amount of discomfort is too minuscule. A sign of healthy teeth and gums is not noticing them. If there’s any pain, discomfort, or sensitivity, it could be a sign of a serious dental issue that we want to help nip in the bud.