It’s a parent’s worst nightmare: A noise and then a cry, and you find your child standing there with a swollen or bloody mouth. It’s a pediatric dental emergency — a scary situation that requires clear thinking to get the best possible professional treatment.
Of course, it’s true that not every pediatric dental emergency will be so dramatic. Some may only involve swelling, a toothache, or an infection. But it’s a pediatric dental emergency nevertheless, and it requires the attention of an experienced dental practitioner.
Pediatric dentistry is a specialty within the dental profession that involves knowledge of the development of a child’s mouth and some of the related issues that come along as they grow. To learn more about what to do in a pediatric dental emergency, contact Lovett Dental Sharpstown today at 972.848.8947.
What to Do During a Pediatric Dental Emergency
Dental accidents, including those involving children, are unfortunately common. When one happens, it’s important to act fast. As the American Academy of Pediatrics puts it, “Knowing how to handle a dental emergency can mean the difference between saving or losing your child’s permanent tooth.”
The first focus, though, should not necessarily be on the teeth. Make sure your child hasn’t experienced a more serious injury to another part of his body. If you have any concerns, call 911.
In the case of severe dental emergencies, such as a knocked-out tooth, you will want to take your child either to the emergency room or a dentist. Some steps you take at the onset can also help — if it’s a knocked-out tooth, keep it moist in a separate container or with milk.
Fast action is also critical in the case of a cracked tooth or if your child bites his tongue or cheek. You can also help ease the pain of a toothache at home before seeing the dentist.
Tips to Avoid a Pediatric Dental Emergency
While nobody can guarantee that you’ll never face a pediatric dental emergency, you can help reduce the risk of one happening. Some of these are just common-sense measures, but as with anything, take a little planning to implement. For instance:
- Children should always wear mouthguards and helmets when playing sports.
- Teach children to use scissors, instead of their teeth, to open packages or containers.
- Deploy child-barriers at stairway entries to protect against untimely falls.
- Encourage children not to run with things in their mouths.
- Keep up regular visits with your dentist.
The last one may be the most important — it’s the old saw: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Develop Good Habits to Prevent a Pediatric Dental Emergency
Again, practicing good dental hygiene isn’t a foolproof defense against a pediatric dental emergency. But the better you take care of your teeth, the fewer chances there are for something to go wrong.
Start with teaching good daily brushing and flossing habits. These are crucial in removing damaging acids or other food debris, which can cause wearing away of protective enamel.
It’s not only just about brushing and flossing; you should brush and floss the right way. The Mayo Clinic, for example, discusses how you should use the right type of brush and toothpaste and to choose the best floss.
By cultivating the right habits, you can build a solid foundation that will keep emergencies at bay for a lifetime.
Contact Lovett Dental Sharpstown Today
Lovett Dental Sharpstown understands the bond between parents and children. Facing a pediatric dental emergency is something no one relishes as we want to give our children the best life. Our clinical team of professionals will quickly assess the emergency and develop a treatment plan to help your little one start smiling again. Even beyond emergencies, we create a family-friendly environment through our pediatric dentistry practice. Our pediatric team specializes in children’s needs, offering other services such as early specialty dentistry and services for pediatric teeth cleanings. Contact us today at 972.848.8947 for an appointment.