Emergencies

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Toothache

Sometimes a child can experience a toothache. In this instance, we recommend cleaning around the sore tooth meticulously. Rinse the mouth using warm salt water or use dental floss to displace any food or debris trapped between teeth. DO NOT place aspirin on the gum area of the aching tooth. In the event of facial swelling, apply cold compresses to the area. For temporary pain relief, you may you’re your child acetaminophen. If the pain doesn’t subside in a day or two, please call our office to schedule an appointment.

Bitten Tongue, Lip or Cheek

Apply firm (but gentle) pressure to the area with sterile gauze or a clean cloth until the bleeding subsides. After the bleeding stops, ice can be applied to any bruised areas to alleviate swelling and soreness. If the bleeding does not stop with pressure or continues after 15 minutes, call our office immediately.

Knocked Out Permanent Tooth

If you are able to find the tooth, be sure to hold it by the crown (top) and not the root end. Rinse off the tooth, but do not clean or handle it more than necessary. If possible, try to reinsert the tooth back in the socket. Have your child hold it in place by biting on a clean piece of gauze or a cloth until you can get to the office. If the tooth cannot be reinserted, carry it in a cup containing milk. Refrain from placing the tooth in water. Because time is a critical factor in saving the tooth, call our office immediately to schedule an appointment.

Broken Braces and Wires

A loose or broken appliance usually does not require emergency attention. If necessary, cut off the offending piece using a small pair of fingernail clippers that have been washed and sterilized in alcohol. If the broken piece cannot be removed, try covering the sharp or protruding end with a piece of gauze. If the wire becomes stuck in the gums, cheek or tongue, DO NOT try to remove it. Bring your child to the office immediately so that we can resolve the problem.

Broken Tooth

As long as there is no bleeding, apply cold compresses to the facial area of the injury to reduce pain and swelling. Hot or cold food and drinks should be avoided. Schedule an appointment for your child.

If you notice hemorrhaging (bleeding) from inside the tooth, contact us immediately so we can see your child as soon as possible.

Other Emergency Conditions:

Possible Broken Jaw

In you think that your child’s jaw is fractured, we recommend you go to the nearest hospital emergency room. Our doctors don’t treat jaw fractures, but can refer you to an oral surgeon. Try to keep the jaws stabilized and advise your child to refrain from talking or moving.

Bleeding After a Baby Tooth Falls Out

After a baby tooth falls out, there may be a small amount of bleeding. Place a clean piece of gauze or cloth over the bleeding area. Have your child bite down on the gauze softly for 10-15 minutes. Your child can repeat this process again if necessary, however if bleeding persists, please call our office so we can evaluate the situation and offer advice.

Cold or Canker Sores

Many children occasionally suffer from “cold” or “canker” sores. Over-the-counter medications like Zilactin-B will usually provide relief. Some serious diseases begin as sores, so if sores persist, please schedule a dental evaluation.