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Dental Emergencies


If you are dealing with a dental emergency, call our office immediately. If you need urgent treatment after hours, you will be directed to an on-call doctor. Below are tips on dealing with urgent dental situations; the most important thing to do is to calm your child down to avoid fear, stress or anxiety


If your child complains of a toothache, begin by meticulously cleaning around the sore tooth. Using warm salt water, rinse the mouth to remove any food trapped between teeth. Never use aspirin on the aching tooth or gum, as it can cause infection. In the event of facial swelling, apply a cold compress to the area. For temporary relief, children’s pain relievers are recommended and may be taken orally. Schedule an appointment as soon as possible.

Bitten Lip or Tongue

If your child has bitten his lip or tongue severely enough to cause bleeding, clean the bite gently with water and apply firm but gentle pressure with a cold compress (sterile gauze or clean cloth). Give us a call to help determine the severity of the bleeding. If bleeding does not stop with added pressure after 15 minutes, go to the emergency room.

Broken, Chipped or Fractured Tooth

If your child has chipped or broken a piece off of a tooth, first rinse the area with warm water. Use a cold compress over the facial area of the injury to lessen swelling. Try to save any broken tooth fragments. Call our office immediately.

Knocked Out Tooth

If your child’s tooth has been knocked out of place, recover the tooth, making sure to hold it by the crown (the part that you can see when it’s in place). Rinse, but do not clean or handle the tooth more than necessary. Rinse the tooth off (without soap) and reinsert the tooth into the socket and hold it in place with a clean cloth or gauze. It the tooth cannot be reinserted, carry it in a cup with milk. If you act quickly, you can save the tooth. Call us immediately.

Broken Jaw

If you know or suspect your child has sustained a broken jaw, use a cold towel to tie the mouth closed to reduce swelling. Head to the hospital immediately. In many cases a broken jaw is the result of a blow to the head, which can be dangerous and even life-threatening.

Bleeding After a Baby Tooth Falls Out

Fold a piece of gauze and place it tightly over the bleeding area. Ask your child to bite down on the gauze for 15 minutes; if bleeding continues, call our office immediately.

Cold or Canker Sores

If your child experiences a sore in the mouth, over-the-counter medications will provide temporary relief. If the sore persists, call our office.

Avoiding Injury

You can help your child avoid dental emergencies. Do not let your child chew on ice, popcorn kernels, or other hard foods that may cause injury. Always use car seats and booster seats for young children. If your child is involved in sports, use a mouthguard. Finally, regular brushing and flossing and visits to our office can prevent toothaches and decay.