How to Handle a Dental Emergency
In many ways, a dental emergency is similar to caring for any other injury. In general, you should take the following action in the event of trauma to the mouth or teeth:
- Check for bleeding
- Stop the bleeding by applying pressure
- Clean the wound with salt water or antiseptic rinse
- Assess the severity
- Take the injured child to your pediatrician or dentist as soon as possible
You can place an ice pack or cool compress on your child's face to keep down any swelling. Also, take some time to reassure your child that your dentist is well-trained to repair teeth and relieve discomfort.
Typically if your child has lost a baby tooth in the injury, they are not reattached. If your child has lost a permanent tooth, pick it up and be careful not to touch the root. According to MedlinePlus, you should gently place the tooth back in your child's mouth to maintain moisture and increase the chances that the dentist can successfully reattach it. To keep it in place, MedlinePlus suggests biting down gently on gauze or even a wet teabag.
If your child can't keep the tooth in their mouth, place it in a cup filled with a little bit of saliva or milk to keep the root moist. Even if the tooth looks damaged or broken, bring it along and let the dentist decide if it can be repaired.