What should I do if my child falls and knocks out a tooth?
Remain calm. Locate the tooth and pick it up by the chewing surface, being careful not to touch the root.
If the tooth is a permanent tooth and is not dirty or broken, you should attempt to reinsert it into your child’s mouth into the empty socket. If you are able to reinsert it, have your child hold the tooth in place by biting on a clean piece of cloth or gauze and go directly to you pediatric dentist. If you cannot reinsert the tooth (or if it is dirty or broken), put the tooth in a glass of milk and take it and your child immediately to your dentist’s office.
If the tooth is a baby tooth/primary tooth, contact our office immediately and do not attempt to reinsert the tooth in order to avoid damaging the developing permanent tooth. Your dentist will be able to determine if any follow-up care is necessary.
What should I do if my child chips or breaks a tooth?
Even if the damaged tooth is not a permanent one, it is important to go immediately to the dentist office. Once a tooth has become chipped or broken, bacteria can enter the tooth’s pulp or nerve and cause an infection. It is important for a dentist to evaluate the damage and seal the enamel to keep bacteria out and ward off infection. If you are able to locate the piece of broken tooth, put it in a glass of milk and bring it with you to your pediatric dentist. In some cases, the broken piece can be reattached in the office.
- Apply direct pressure on the bleeding area using a clean cloth.
- If there is swelling, use a cold compress to reduce the swelling (a Popsicle often works well).
- Give your child an appropriate dose of Acetaminophen or Ibuprofen.
What should I do if my child cuts or bites their tongue, lip, or cheek?
A cut or bitten tongue, lip, or cheek can lead to bleeding, swelling and discomfort. To relieve these symptoms, first apply direct pressure to the wound to stop the bleeding. If there is swelling, you can reduce it by applying a cold compress. (A popsicle works well.) Finally, give your child acetaminophen or ibuprofen to alleviate pain or discomfort.