Life is full of surprises including dental emergencies. Don’t panic—we’re here to help.

 

What should I do if my child falls and knocks out a permanent 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 not dirty or broken, try to reinsert it into the empty socket in your child’s mouth. If you can reinsert it, have your child hold the tooth in place by biting on a clean piece of cloth (towel) or gauze. Come directly to us.

If you cannot reinsert the tooth (or if it is dirty or broken), put the tooth in a glass of milk. Bring it and your child to us or the emergency department (if injury occurs after hours) immediately.

 

Chipped or broken tooth?

Even if the damaged tooth is not a permanent one, head to our office right away. Once a tooth has become chipped or broken, bacteria can enter the tooth’s pulp or nerve and cause an infection. We need to evaluate the damage and possibly seal the enamel to keep bacteria out and ward off infection.

Put the piece of broken tooth in a glass of milk and bring it with you. In some cases, we can reattach the broken piece in our office.

Give your child an appropriate dose of acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

 

Cut/Biten Tongue, Lip or Cheek?

A cut or bitten tongue, lip or cheek is no fun. It can lead to bleeding, swelling and discomfort. To relieve these symptoms, apply direct pressure to the wound to stop the bleeding. If there is swelling, apply a cold compress (a popsicle works well.) Finally, give your child acetaminophen or ibuprofen for any discomfort.