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Dental emergencies can arise at any time and by their very nature, can be unpredictable. Still, there are some things that can help you should you find your child experiencing a common dental emergency like an oral injury. This can help them get the dental care they need as quickly as possible for the best possible outcome.

If your child has an injury to the mouth, you can check first for bleeding. You’ll want to apply pressure to the wounded area with some clean gauze after rinsing their mouth with salt water or an antiseptic mouthwash. If the injury requires being treated professionally, call our dentist right away for instructions. If we are unavailable, an emergency room visit might be necessary, depending on how severe the wound is. Bleeding should not be left untreated.

Putting an ice pack or cold compress onto your child’s face can also help with swelling and it is crucial that you reassure your child to keep them calm. If your child loses a baby tooth, you don’t have to worry about it too much. Just address the bleeding. It’s only if one of their permanent teeth has been knocked out that we will want to reattach it, whenever possible. Carefully place the tooth in a container of milk or your child’s saliva until they can be seen by our dentist. There are containers specifically made to keep a knocked-out tooth safe and should be available at any pharmacy to keep in your dental emergency kit. This is mainly so that the tooth’s roots are protected to keep them alive for reattaching. Make sure you stock a dental first aid kit at home.

Stock Your Own Dental First Aid Kit:

-Cold compress
-Small cup to hold mouthwash when needed.
-Child-friendly mouthwash
-Sterile gauze
-Tooth storage container

Protecting Your Child’s Teeth

Of course, prevention is the best way to keep your child’s smile safe! Make sure your child brushes and flosses daily, and has regular dental checkups to spot developing problems early. Along with keeping a dental emergency kit handy, make sure your child knows not to chew on hard objects no matter how tempting. This includes chomping on ice, accidentally biting a popcorn kernel and staying away from hard candies or “jawbreakers”. When traveling in a motor vehicle, make sure to use a child’s car seat (or seat belt when they are older). Child-proof your home to prevent falls, and have your child wear a mouth guard whenever they participate in contact or high-impact sports.

While you can’t always stop accidents from happening, you can often avoid problems with some strategic planning and preparation beforehand. Please reach out to our team to learn more about mouth guards for your child or to schedule your child’s next dental checkup. Keeping their smiles healthy is our entire team’s goal!

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