If your child is like most kids, then his or her primary concern is having fun. This care-free mentality can sometimes be the recipe for a dental emergency, though. Because dental trauma can happen when you least expect it, your emergency dentist in Helena says it’s best to be prepared. So as you read on, learn about some of the common types of trauma that can occur and how to effectively respond.
Here are the Basics
While there are several types of dental emergencies that can unfold, there are three basic steps that should always be taken:
- To remain calm so your child doesn’t panic
- To fully assess the situation so you know what’s going on
- To contact your emergency dentist to provide the details and schedule a visit
The key to the above steps, though, is to first be able to recognize that a dental emergency has occurred.
A Knocked-Out Tooth
Because children can be so active, there is a greater chance of sudden impact to the face from either a fall or a collision with another child, which can result in a dislodged tooth. If this happens, you should rinse the tooth under cool water and try to reinsert it.
If that’s not possible, then soak the tooth in a cup of water or milk until you can visit your emergency dentist. Meanwhile, to lessen any pain, you can give your child ibuprofen and apply ice to the outside of his or her jaw to reduce any swelling.
A Severe Toothache
A toothache can leave your child in acute pain. One of the initial steps you can take is to carefully clean around the affected tooth to remove any lingering debris. You can also have your child rinse with salt water to neutralize any bacteria.
One practice to avoid, though, is placing aspirin directly on the tooth or gums, as this can cause permanent damage.
A Soft Tissue Injury
In the blink of an eye, a lip, tongue or other soft tissue can be cut. If this happens, the first priority is to stop the bleeding by applying gentle pressure using a clean cloth or gauze. Then, if there is any swelling, you can apply a frozen pack of vegetables to the affected area.
A Possible Broken Jaw
If you suspect your child has a broken jaw, it’s imperative that it remains immovable. So you can tie a belt, towel or shoelace around his or her face to prevent any movement. Then, you should immediately head to the emergency room.
Dental emergencies are no fun and they can be intense, but by taking these immediate steps and getting help from your local emergency dentist, your child can recover quickly.
About the Author
A graduate of the Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, Dr. Matthew Coplin has been providing the absolute best in pediatric dental care for nearly 20 years. He calms parents’ worries by helping children recover from dental emergencies at Kalmor Dental, and he can be reached for more information through his website.