Dealing with a pediatric dental emergency is always a challenge. It can be stressful helping a child communicate exactly what the problem is as well as knowing what action to take. However, handling a pediatric dental emergency can be straight forward when you know what to do.
Although children sometimes experience anxiety when going to the dentist, remaining calm and in control of the situation, will go a long way in comforting your child. Knowing where to find the best pediatric dentists also helps. If you happen to find yourself dealing with a pediatric dental emergency, follow these steps.
Assess the Situation and Reassure Your Child
Before you do anything else, you first need to assess the severity of the situation. Has your child lost a tooth? Is a tooth chipped or broken? We recommend booking an emergency appointment for these issues:
- Broken, cracked or chipped tooth
- Swollen gums
- Lost filling, bridge, or crown
If there has been enough force to damage a tooth, it’s quite possible your child has an injury elsewhere too. Check carefully, and if you suspect they might have a head injury, don’t delay in going straight to the ER or calling 911 for assistance. If there is trauma to your child’s jaw or the surrounding area, our maxillofacial surgeon can do emergency surgery.
Accidents are scary for children, they need you to be calm and confident, Above all, remain in control of the situation and don’t panic.
Although sometimes easier said than done, keeping calm will help reassure your child that there’s nothing to worry about. Once your child feels secure, it will be easier to assess how severe the situation is and what the best course of action is.
Our sedation dentistry options are helpful for children who experience a high level of anxiety and have a fear of the dentist.
Administer Pain Relief and Recover the Tooth
Giving your child pain relief as soon as possible will help lower the effect of any toothache or pain. Always remember to follow the dosage instructions and try to use a pain relief medication that your child is familiar with so you can avoid allergic reactions or intolerances.
You can also apply a cold compress to the injury in order to reduce any swelling. If they are bleeding, ask them to hold a clean cloth to the injury. After, try to recover the tooth or any missing parts of the tooth. This is also essential so that you know your child hasn’t swallowed the tooth.
Most importantly, if you can find the tooth, carefully clean it with water without damaging the nerve, and bring it to the dentist with you. Ideally, bring the tooth in a sealed container of milk.
If your child is old enough so that they’re not at an obvious risk of choking or swallowing the tooth, ask them if they can reinsert the tooth into the socket and hold it there. It goes without saying to never use superglue. Arriving quickly with the tooth gives you the best chance of saving and reinserting the tooth.
Call Your Dentist During a Pediatric Dental Emergency
Call your dentist as soon as possible and say you have a pediatric dental emergency. Try to explain in detail what has happened. Once they understand the situation, they’ll be able to advise you on what to do and schedule an emergency appointment for your child. Your dentist can also let you know what kind of care your child will need before they arrive at their appointment. If your child is experiencing pain or discomfort don’t hesitate in contacting our specialized pediatric dentists today. Call us on 281.336.8068 and we’ll schedule in an appointment for your child.