We take dental emergencies seriously and we always have a doctor on call. If your child experiences a concerning dental problem outside of regular office hours, please call our office and the voice message system will provide you with the on-call phone number. Many times these problems can be discussed over the phone and your child can be treated during normal office hours when we have our full compliment of staff. However, we will make arrangements to see your child if the emergency needs immediate attention.
Below is a list of some of the most common dental emergencies and what you should do in each instance.
Tooth Knocked Out
Knocking out a permanent truth is a true emergency and your child needs to be treated as soon as possible. Please place the tooth back in the socket (if possible) and have the child hold it in place with their finger until you get to our office. If this is not possible, then store the tooth in milk. It is CRUCIAL that the tooth not be placed in water or left out to dry.
We generally do not re-implant baby teeth as it can potentially damage the developing permanent tooth.
If a piece of your child’s permanent tooth breaks off, please locate the broken piece (if possible) and place it in water. Often times this broken piece can be reattached. The severity of the break will determine if this needs to be treated as soon as possible or if can wait until the next business day.
Permanent Tooth Erupting While the Baby Tooth is Still in Place
This is a very common occurrence with tooth eruption. It can be uncomfortable for your child as the baby tooth may be chipping or irritating the gum tissue. We advise tylenol or ibuprofen as needed for pain and avoidance of chewing on that side of the mouth. We will remove the baby tooth if it does not fall out by itself. Your child should be encouraged to keep “wiggling” the baby tooth.
Injuries to Baby Teeth
Young children are prone to falls and injuries. Unfortunately, their coordination is not always as advanced as their desire to play. Often times they cannot get their hands out to protect their mouth. In most cases these injuries look much worse than they are and they seldom require intervention. However, treatment is necessary if a tooth has been displaced into a position that interferes with the child’s ability to bite down properly.