Dental emergencies happen. As a pediatric emergency dentist for Tucson, AZ, our first priority with any trauma to the head or neck is to determine if the child experienced a concussion or other serious injury. If you suspect either, visit a hospital emergency room immediately.
Below are some common dental emergencies and helpful hints on how to handle them.
Clean the affected tooth thoroughly. Rinse the child’s mouth with warm water or use dental floss to dislodge any food in the gums. DO NOT place aspirin or heat on the gums or on the aching tooth. If pain persists, contact your pediatric dentist. If the child’s face is swollen, apply a cold compress and contact your pediatric dentist immediately.
Cut or Bitten Tongue, Lip or Cheek:
Apply ice to the injured area to help control swelling. To control bleeding, apply firm but gentle pressure with a gauze or cloth. If bleeding cannot be stopped by simple pressure, call a doctor or visit the hospital emergency room.
Chipped or Fractured Tooth:
If possible, locate and save any broken tooth fragments and bring them with you to the dentist. Some fractured teeth benefit from immediate treatment, so contact your pediatric dentist right away.
Baby Tooth Pushed out of Place:
Rinse the child’s mouth with water and apply a cold compress to reduce facial swelling. In most cases, no emergency care is necessary. Call your pediatric dentist to determine if an immediate consultation is needed.
Permanent Tooth Pushed out of Place:
Rinse the child’s mouth with water and apply a cold compress to reduce facial swelling. Some displaced permanent teeth benefit from immediate treatment, so contact your pediatric dentist right away.
Knocked Out Permanent Tooth:
If possible, find the tooth. Handle it by the crown (top) of the tooth, not by the root. Very GENTLY rinse the tooth with water if you plan to re-implant the tooth. DO NOT clean with soap, scrub or handle the tooth unnecessarily. Inspect the tooth for fractures. If it is sound, try to reinsert it in the socket. Have the child hold the tooth in place by biting down on gauze. If you cannot re-insert the tooth, transport the tooth in a cup containing the patient’s saliva or milk (or ice water if milk is not available). If the patient is old enough, the tooth may also be carried in the patient’s mouth (beside the cheek). Time is a critical in saving the tooth, so please call your pediatric dentist immediately for an emergency consultation.
Knocked Out Baby Tooth:
Baby teeth should not be put back in the child’s mouth. Rinse the child’s mouth with water and apply a cold compress to reduce facial swelling. If possible, find the tooth and bring it with you to the dentist.
Severe Blow to the Head:
Take the child to your nearest hospital emergency room immediately.
When it comes to any type of dental trauma, we believe it is always better to be safe than sorry. If your child has endured any type of injury to the head, neck or mouth, don’t hesitate to contact us at Northwest Children’s Dentistry, your pediatric emergency dentist in Tucson. We’re happy to help!