What to do if your child’s tooth gets knocked outDecember 24, 2020 2:15 pm
Children seem to have limitless energy, and sometimes the rough and tumble of play and sports activities can have unexpected consequences! A careless knock to the mouth, or an accidental fall, can loosen a tooth or knock it out completely. Whether this happens at home, at school, or while playing sports, it’s good to know how you can best deal with the situation.
What to do first
First – don’t panic. Accidents happen, and it’s important to stay calm so as not to distress your child, and to help yourself deal with it in the right way. First, examine your child’s mouth so you can assess the damage. If there looks to be more injured than just the tooth, for example the gums or anywhere else on the head, then it’s best to go to the hospital immediately.
If it just the tooth, then an emergency pediatric dentist will be able to help.
If the tooth is just loose and still in position, then you should call the dentist for advice on repairing a broken tooth. They may want you to come in so they can check there’s no unseen damage to the tooth.
If the tooth has been knocked out, then urgent dental care is required. There are 24-hour dental care options in Dubai, so call the emergency pediatric dentist for an immediate appointment. Find the tooth, but be very careful how you handle it. If the tooth is dirty or has debris on it, rinse it lightly in water – but avoid touching the root, as this can damage the
cells and affect the chances of re-implanting it later.
If possible, place the tooth carefully back into the socket for the journey to the dentist, or (if your child is old enough) keep it safely tucked in the cheek. If this isn’t possible, then keep the tooth in milk or saltwater (not freshwater) – don’t let it dry out in a kitchen towel or a napkin. This also helps keep the tooth in the best possible condition to re-attach into place. The sooner you see the dentist – the better the chance of re-implanting the tooth successfully.
If you cant find the tooth then you should definitely seek out urgent dental care anyway, as the tooth may be stuck in your child’s mouth. The dentist can perform an x-ray to check this, and help fix it.
At the dentist
When you arrive at the dentist, they will check a few details with you, including up-to-date tetanus immunizations. This is important because, if the injury has broken the skin, bacteria can get in – and this can lead to a rare but very serious condition called tetanus.
If the tooth is intact then the dentist will do their best to try and re-attach it into place. This might involve using a ‘splint’ to help support the tooth in place. Your child will likely be given antibiotics as well, to reduce the chance of infection. Afterward, you will have to make sure your child keeps their teeth very clean, brushing thoroughly but carefully, and using a
mouthwash as well. The dentist will probably ask you to come back in a couple of weeks to check progress and see if the procedure has been successful.
What about baby teeth?
If it is a baby tooth that has been knocked out, then you should still see the dentist. While the dentist probably won’t try to re-implant it, whether it is a problem really does depend on the age of your child. For example, if your child is very young, then the gap in their teeth may affect the development of the adult set later. Or there may also be damage below the gumline which the dentist needs to treat. So, see your emergency pediatric dentist and be better safe than sorry!
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