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As any parent knows, emergencies can happen at any time and without warning – and that includes child dental emergencies. When your child experiences a sudden toothache, a broken tooth, or worse, a knocked-out tooth, it can be terrifying not only for them but also for you. Understanding what to do in such situations can make all the difference in alleviating their pain and preventing further damage.

What is Considered a Pediatric Dental Emergency?

A pediatric dental emergency is any dental issue your child encounters that requires immediate attention to relieve severe pain, stop ongoing tissue bleeding, or save a tooth that might be lost or damaged. Some common dental emergencies in children include:

  • Severe toothaches
  • Uncontrolled bleeding in the mouth
  • Swelling in your mouth or facial area
  • Lost or broken fillings
  • Cracked or broken teeth
  • Knocked-out teeth
  • Infections

What to Do If Your Child Has a Dental Emergency

Encountering a sudden dental emergency in children can be a stressful experience. If you find your child in the face of a dental emergency, follow these steps.

  1. Stay calm. It is essential to remain calm and reassure your child, as this can help them feel more at ease during a stressful situation. This also reduces the chance of dental-related anxiety in the future.
  2. Assess the situation. Examine the affected area carefully, looking for bleeding, swelling, or visible damage to the teeth or gums. Referring to the list of dental issues that are considered emergencies can help with addressing the severity of the problem.
  3. Contact a pediatric dentist. If you find that your child is experiencing a dental emergency, call your pediatric dentist right away and explain what happened. Many dental practices have emergency dental care services for kids to handle urgent cases.
  4. Control the bleeding. If your child is bleeding, apply gentle pressure with a clean cloth or gauze pad to help stop it. Try and keep the cloth in place until you are able to see the dentist.
  5. Preserve your kids’ knocked-out teeth. If a tooth gets knocked out, gently rinse it with water, being careful not to touch the root and store it in a clean container with milk or saliva. In this case, it’s important to bring it to your child’s dentist as soon as possible to see if re-implantation is a possibility.
  6. Keep the swelling down. If your child has a cracked tooth, immediately rinse the mouth with warm water to clean the area and apply a cold compress on the face to keep any swelling down.

How to Prevent Pediatric Dental Emergencies

While it’s impossible to completely rule out the chance of your child having a dental emergency, there are steps that you can take to significantly reduce the likelihood. Some things you can do to prevent pediatric dental emergencies include:

  • Making sure your child has good oral hygiene. This includes regular brushing and flossing, using mouthwash, and attending routine dental check-ups.
  • Ensuring your child has a balanced diet that is limited in sugary food and drinks that can cause cavities
  • Having your child wear a mouthguard if they participate in sports
  • Teaching your child not to use their teeth to accomplish tasks like opening containers
  • Scheduling bi-annual dental check-ups to catch any dental problems early

Emergency Dental Care for Kids in Denver, CO

Never hesitate to seek immediate care during a pediatric dental emergency regardless of whether or not you think it’s severe. If you find your child in the face of a dental emergency and live in the Denver area, the Cody Dental Group is here to evaluate their condition quickly and effectively. With a group of compassionate and highly skilled pediatric dentists on your side, your child will be sure to receive high quality treatment. Contact us to schedule an appointment today.