Dental emergencies, injuries, or trauma are often stressful for both parents and kids, which are extremely common. A dental emergency is any trauma to the mouth that may cause bleeding and lacerations to the gums, and dislodge or fractured teeth may require medical attention. There are two peak risk periods for dental trauma. It comes during toddlerhood because it is when environmental exploration begins, and the other is during the adolescent period, where sports injury is common.
Active children like to run and play, which means dental accidents can happen anytime and anywhere. Knowing how to handle a dental emergency can mean the difference between saving and losing your child’s permanent or baby tooth.
According to the North Dakota Department of Health, you should take the following action in the event of trauma to the mouth or teeth:
- Check for bleeding
- Stop the bleeding by applying pressure
- Clean the wound
- Assess the severity
- Take the injured child to the doctor or dentist as soon as possible
Here are some more tips to do during an urgent dental situation:
- Bitten cheek, lip, or tongue: If your child has a bitten lip, cheek, or tongue, clean the bite gently with water and apply a cold, wet towel or washcloth pressed firmly against the area to reduce or avoid swelling.
- Object caught in between teeth: If a child has an object between their teeth, try to remove it first with dental floss. Never use a metal, plastic, or sharp tool to remove a stuck object to prevent further injury.
- Knocked-out tooth: When your child’s tooth has been knocked out, keep and preserve it and goto your pediatric dentist immediately. If it is a baby tooth, retrieve it and keep it moist in a glass of milk until you see the dentist. Whereas, for a permanent tooth, follow the same steps and avoid touching the roots.
- Loose Tooth: A loose baby tooth is normal and expected. However, the loose permanent tooth is a different story. If your child’s tooth did not loosen naturally, go to your dentist to determine the right course of action.
- Cracked or broken tooth: Locate any tooth fragments and bring them to your dentist. Clean the inside of your mouth by rinsing warm water to ensure there are no tooth fragments left between the cheek and jaw.
- Toothache: If your child has pain, rinse the mouth with warm water, and check if there are any impacted food. If there is any food left, remove it with a clean finger or dental floss or a toothbrush. Apply a cold compress in the area to reduce swelling and contact your dentist for medical advice.
A dental first-aid kit is a great way to be prepared for dental emergencies. According to the National Institute of Health, it should include gauze, a small cup, mouthwash, cold compress, and a tooth storage device.
Whether dental trauma is a result of an accident or biting alone, it is essential to see your child’s dentist. If these are left untreated, a dental emergency can lead to severe complications.
We, at Kidsmile, are passionately dedicated to providing quality dental care for your child. Our goal is to partner with you to help your child establish and achieve excellent oral health.
You can message us here or via our social media accounts for an initial consultation or in booking your appointment.