Dental emergencies usually occur after regular office hours! For that reason, at Fremont Children’s Dentistry, we are available to our patients of record in the event of an accident, dental pain, or infection. Please contact the office number for instructions. In the meantime, the following information may be helpful.
Tooth Ache or Swelling
Children normally do not complain of tooth pain unless something really hurts. Unfortunately by the time a tooth hurts, it usually signals an advanced problem. Many times food gets stuck in between the cavity and the adjacent tooth causing pain. However, when a tooth ache wakes the child from sleep, it needs to be addressed soon. You may give your child either Children’s Tylenol or Children’s Ibuprofen (in it’s different presentations) making sure to follow the directions on the bottle. Children will seldom, if ever, need a prescription for narcotic pain medicine. If there is swelling, contact your dentist immediately.
Accidents Involving the Mouth
Accidents to the face and mouth come in all forms, from the trauma to the gum, to the displaced tooth. Call your dentist and follow their advice, no matter how big or small the accident, with children it is best to have them checked out.
Knocked Out Tooth
Children are more prone to accidents to their front teeth when they are beginning to walk or when the adult front teeth first come in. If a young child knocks a baby tooth out, it is best not to try to put it back in. A knocked out primary (baby) tooth should never be re-implanted as this can cause damage to the developing permanent tooth. It is important, however, to recover the tooth and account for it and its parts.
A permanent tooth has a good chance of being saved if the following steps are carried out. Recover the tooth, making sure to hold it by the crown (top) and not the root end. Do not touch the root. Rinse, but do not clean or handle the tooth more than necessary. Reinsert the tooth in the socket in the correct position (making sure it is not backwards) and hold it in place using a clean piece of gauze or cloth. If the tooth cannot be reinserted, carry it in a cup containing milk or the patient’s own saliva. Because time is essential, see a dentist immediately. The longer the tooth is out of its socket, the lower the chance of being able to save it.
Get the details of how the accident happened, as this provides the dentist with good diagnostic information. Rinse the area with warm water. If the gum is involved and bleeding, apply some pressure to it with a clean wash cloth or gauze. If there is injury to the face, put a cold compress over the cheek or lip in the area of the injury. Recover any broken tooth fragments. Get immediate dental attention.
Cut or Bitten Lip, Cheek or Tongue
A bite to the lip, cheek or tongue can look scary but it is not the end of the world and it will heal on its own. Ice can be applied to any bruised areas. For bleeding, apply firm (but gentle) pressure with clean gauze or a clean cloth. If the bleeding does not stop with pressure or continues after 15 minutes, go to an emergency room.
Possible Broken Jaw
In the event of jaw injury which may involve a broken jaw, go immediately to an emergency room. Trauma this severe will usually involve other areas of concern.
Broken Braces and Wires
Remove a broken appliance only if it comes out easily. If it is lodged or painful to remove, cover any protruding edges with wax, cotton balls, gauze or chewing gum. DO NOT REMOVE any wire caught in the gums, cheek or tongue; contact your orthodontist or dentist. Emergency attention is usually not required for loose or broken appliances that cause no discomfort.