Dealing with dental injuries in children.
The best treatment is prevention. Children should wear properly constructed mouth guards whilst playing any sports or martial arts.
One in five children will have some accident involving their teeth. Toddlers fall down, older children cycle, skateboard, trampoline and run around. They also fall over in and around swimming pools. They play contact sports- rugby, hockey and football. The most common age group for accidents is 7-11 and boys are twice as likely as girls to have an accident. Children with front teeth that stick out are more likely to have a trauma involving those teeth.
If your child has an accident involving their teeth please bring them to the dentist straight away.
A dentist will examine your child and treat as necessary. Sometimes x-rays will be required.
A small chip in a baby or permanent tooth can be smoothed down, a bigger break may require a tooth coloured filling.
A tooth which has been pushed into the gum is usually left alone after an examination as it will normally erupt again by itself.
A permanent tooth knocked out of position may be repositioned by the dentist- it may require some support for a while until it has healed. A baby tooth that has been knocked out of position may be left alone so no further damage is caused. Sometimes a baby tooth will have to be removed if it has been knocked out of position.
If a tooth has broken and has exposed the nerve inside the tooth then it needs to be treated immediately, the nerve may need to be removed and the tooth restored. This may take more than one appointment.
REMEMBER IF YOUR CHILD HAS AN ACCIDENT WITH THEIR BABY OR PERMANENT TEETH PLEASE SEE A DENTIST AS SOON AS POSSIBLE .
If a BABY tooth is knocked out PLEASE DO NOT TRY TO REPLACE IT. Bring it to the dentist so it can be examined along with your child.
If a permanent tooth is knocked out please act quickly.
Follow these steps:
Find the tooth. Hold the tooth by the crown ( the part you can see in the mouth ) NOT the root.
DO NOT scrub the tooth or place in disinfectant.
If the tooth is clean – hold by the crown and gently push it into the socket making sure it is the right way around. This is usually painless if done immediately after the accident.
If the tooth is dirty – hold by the crown, rinse gently in milk before pushing gently into place.
Hold the tooth in place. Ask the child to bite gently onto a handkerchief.
Go to the dentist IMMEDIATELY.
If you CANNOT put the tooth back in.
You can place the tooth in the mouth in between the cheeks and gum OR place in a cup of milk.
Do not let the tooth dry out.
Do not place in disinfectant.
Go to the dentist IMMEDIATELY or to the hospital casualty department and ask to be seen by the dentist on duty.