Dental first aid care – Important Info
If you have a child, you understand that dental emergencies can happen. Some problems are a typical occurrence in children and accidents happen. Do you know how to handle a dental emergency and make your child more comfortable?
Here is an overview of some common dental emergencies in children and what you can do about it.
Children will often experience toothaches which can come from cavities or food becoming lodged in the tooth and gums. To treat toothache, clean around the area of the sore tooth thoroughly. Use warm salt water or dental floss if needed to dislodge food or debris trapped in the tooth.You can get additional information at dental first aid care.
Never use aspirin on the gum or tooth to soothe the aching. (This includes “children’s aspirin”).
Give the child acetaminophen (Tylenol) for pain as needed and see a dentist as soon as possible. Toothache is a sign of a dental problem that needs to be treated by your child’s dentist.
Cut, Broken or Bitten Lip, Tongue or Cheek
If the event that your child bites himself or has a busted lip in play, apply ice to any bruised or swollen areas. If there is bleeding, apply gentle but firm pressure to the area until bleeding stops. If bleeding does not stop within 15 minutes or cannot be stopped with gentle pressure, seek help from the emergency room.
Knocked Out Permanent Tooth
Many parents panic when their child loses a permanent tooth but the most important thing is to remain calm, recover the tooth and try to reinsert it. You can carefully rinse the tooth but be sure to hold it by its crown and avoid handling the roots or rubbing too hard. Place the tooth carefully back into its socket and have the child bite down on a clean gauze or towel to create pressure to hold the tooth in place.
If you are unable to reinsert the tooth, transport it in a cup of clean water or milk and see a dentist immediately. Time is very crucial when it comes to reinsterting a permanent tooth. If the accident occurs after dentist hours, you can take your child to the emergency room where they may be able to assist in saving the tooth.
Broken Braces and Wires
If a broken brace or wire can be easily removed from the mouth, then go ahead and remove it. Avoid pulling or forcing any appliance from the mouth. If the wire is stuck in the gum or cheek, do not attempt to remove it. Take the child to a dentist immediately.
If the broken appliance cannot be removed and is not stuck in the gum or cheek, cover the sharp edges with cotton, clean gauze or chewing gum and get to the dentist as soon as possible.
Sometimes the tooth may not actually fall out but part of it will break. Rinse the dirt from the injured area with warm water. Place cold compresses on the face in the area of the injury. Collect the broken fragments of the tooth (if possible) and see a dentist immediately.
Bleeding after a Baby Tooth Falls Out
Bleeding is normal when a baby tooth falls out but should be minimal. Fold and pack a clean gauze or cloth into the area and apply pressure for about 15 minutes. Have the child sit still during this period. If the bleeding persists after 15 minutes, you can repeat the procedure again. If the bleeding still does not stop, seek emergency care from the dentist or ER.
Possible Broken Jaw
If you suspect the child may have a broken or dislocated jaw, try to keep the jaws from moving (hold them in place with a towel) and take the child immediately to the emergency room.
With these tips, you can be prepared for any dental emergency that your child(ren) encounter and can offer them the best treatment possible for a healthier dental future.