Dental emergencies are common in children of all ages--whether they play sports, play rough with their friends, or simply haven’t mastered their coordination. Mouth injuries can be frightening when they happen, both for the child and parent, but they are easier to deal with if you know what steps to take. Here are some basic guidelines to follow while you’re waiting to take your child to a pediatric dentist in Irving, TX.
Chipped and cracked teeth are the most common dental emergencies. They often occur from a blow to the face, but they can also be caused by biting down too hard on certain foods, such as nuts. Have your child rinse his mouth with warm water and save any pieces of the tooth that have chipped off. Take him to your dentist as soon as possible to avoid further damage to the area. Your dentist should be able to use a crown or dental bonding to make the injured tooth look just like new.
If your child’s tooth has been fully knocked out of the socket, rinse the tooth gently to remove any dirt, but don’t scrub it. Keep it in a small container of milk or have your child keep it in his mouth if you think he won’t accidentally swallow it. Get your child to the dentist right away: the lost tooth has the best chance of being reinserted if you get to the dentist within 1 hour of the injury.
Mouth pain can come from many different sources, and only some of them are true emergencies. A dull ache isn’t usually cause for alarm unless it lingers more than a couple of days. Even sharp pain may have simply been caused by biting into a hard piece of food. Have your child brush and floss thoroughly to dislodge any food that might be stuck. Then have him rinse his mouth with warm water and hold a cold compress to the painful area. If the pain continues, bring him to the dentist. It might be a sign of a cavity, a chipped tooth, or gum disease.
Object Caught between Teeth
It’s not unusual for food (and even other objects) to get lodged firmly in between 2 teeth. Sometimes your child can get them out by flossing, but other times he might not be able to remove them on his own. Never use sharp objects to try to remove the stuck item, since they can cut the gums and cause further injury. If flossing doesn’t work, a visit to the dentist can remove the item and prevent complications like inflammation, pain, or cavities.
Injuries to the mouth are common in children, since they tend to accidentally bite down on their tongue or lips, especially if they’re in an accident that results in a blow to the face. This often causes bleeding, which is sometimes severe. There are a lot of blood vessels in the tongue, which can make the injury seem worse than it actually is. Hold a compress to the area for 10-15 minutes to see if the bleeding goes down on its own. If it doesn’t, continue to keep pressure on the area until your child can be seen by a dentist.
You may also notice chronic bleeding from the gums. This isn’t usually an emergency situation, but it can be a sign of conditions like gum disease or gingivitis. These conditions are usually caused by poor brushing habits and can lead to long-term damage if they aren’t corrected. Visit your pediatric dentist in Irving, TX, to see how your child can take better care of his teeth.
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