Our office reserves specific times each day for treatment of patients with dental emergencies. Please call as early as possible to allow for convenient scheduling. If you have a dental emergency after business hours, call the office for instructions to reach the dentist on call.
If your child has a dental emergency, try to remain calm and first determine if there has been any injury to their head/neck or any broken bones. If your child is in acute distress or may have lost consciousness for even a short time, bring them to a hospital emergency room immediately for evaluation.
How to Treat Common Pediatric Dental Emergencies
Toothache: Thoroughly clean the area around the tooth using a toothbrush and toothpaste. Rinse the mouth with warm salt water and use dental floss to remove any trapped food between the teeth. DO NOT place aspirin on the gums or tooth. This will cause a burn to the gum tissues. If there is swelling, apply cold to the outside of the face. Give acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin) for pain and call our office to make arrangements for evaluation.
Bleeding After Loss of a Baby Tooth: Place a gauze pad or clean washcloth over the bleeding area. Keep it in place for 15 minutes and repeat as necessary. If bleeding persists, contact our office immediately.
Loose or Broken Braces and Wires: Loose or broken appliances, brackets or wires which are not causing discomfort for the child usually do not require emergency attention. If a broken appliance, bracket or wire can be easily removed using fingers or a tweezers, take it out of the mouth. If it cannot be easily removed, cover any sharp edges with orthodontic wax. Cotton balls, gauze or even chewing gum can be used if wax is unavailable. If a wire is stuck in the gums, cheeks or tongue, do not remove it. Take the child to the dentist immediately.
Broken or Chipped Tooth: Gently clean or rinse dirt from the area around the break. Place a cold compress on the face in the area of the broken tooth to reduce swelling of soft tissues. Try to locate and save any tooth fragments and call our office to make arrangements for evaluation.
Cut or Bitten Tongue, Lip or Cheek: Apply an ice compress to the injured area. If there is bleeding apply gentle pressure with a clean cloth or gauze. If bleeding does not stop after 15 minutes or cannot be controlled with gentle pressure, go to a hospital emergency room.
Knocked Out Baby Tooth: If the tooth is a primary (baby) tooth, no immediate treatment is necessary. Primary teeth are not re-implanted. Call our office to make arrangements for evaluation.
Knocked Out Permanent Tooth: If the tooth is a permanent tooth, try to find the tooth. Only handle the tooth by the top (crown) portion of the tooth. Do not touch the root portion of the tooth. You may gently rinse the tooth with cold water but do not scrub or clean the tooth excessively. Attempt to reinsert the tooth in its socket. Ask the child to hold the tooth in place by biting on a clean cloth or gauze. If you are unable to reinsert the tooth, transport it in a cup containing milk or water if milk is unavailable. Go to the dentist or emergency room immediately. Time is a critical factor in saving the tooth.