If your child is active or plays sports, you will likely have to deal with a broken or chipped tooth at some point during their childhood. Even if your child is not particularly adventurous, they might still suffer trauma to their mouth, since mouth injuries are extremely common among young kids. By the age of 4, approximately one-third of children have sustained damage to their teeth as the result of trauma.
If your child falls and gets injured, there are several things you should do to make sure their teeth are cared for properly. As with most injuries, time is of the essence when dealing with chipped and broken teeth. Following are things you should do if your child injures their mouth.
Rinse and Inspect
Rinse your child's mouth with cool water and inspect the soft tissues surrounding the injury. If the gums and other soft tissues show obvious signs of injury, treat the site immediately. Stop bleeding by applying firm and constant pressure to the site with a clean washcloth or gauze. If the skin is merely bruised and/or swollen, give your child a frozen treat to ease the swelling. If your child is bleeding a great deal or if there are gaping cuts, take them to the emergency room for stitches.
Collect and Prepare Fragments
If your child is missing a tooth or a portion of a tooth, try to find all missing fragments, especially if it is a permanent tooth. Once you find all the missing fragments, rinse them in cool water and place them in milk. You will need to take all fragments and missing teeth with you to a dentist, such as Rose City Dental Care, to see if they can be replaced. Keep in mind that there is only a few hours before replacing a missing tooth is impossible. So, time is of the essence.
Call Your Dentist
Call your dentist immediately to make an appointment for a dental emergency. If your child has injured a permanent tooth, they will likely be seen right away. However, baby teeth often do not require immediate medical attention. Your dentist will advise you and tell you what the best course of action is in your particular case.
Mouth injuries are traumatic and they often bleed a great deal. Stay calm and gently clean your child's mouth, collect and prepare missing fragments, and call your dentist. If you stay calm throughout the ordeal, your child will likely remain calm as well.