Dr. Rob Mirabelli, Dr. Jen Mirabelli & Dr. Stefanie Hourani
Begin by gently cleaning around the sore tooth. Using lukewarm water, rinse the mouth to displace any food trapped in the cavity. In the event of facial swelling, call your dentist since an antibiotic prescription may be needed. For pain relief, over-the-counter analgesics like ibuprofen or acetaminophen are usually the first line medications. Do not place aspirin directly on the aching tooth or on the adjacent gums, as this can hurt the gum tissue.
Cut or Bitten Tongue, Lip or Cheek
An ice pack can be applied to any swollen or bruised areas. For bleeding, apply firm (but gentle) pressure with gauze or a clean cloth. If the bleeding does not stop with pressure or continues after 15 minutes, consider seeking emergency services through an urgent care facility or hospital.
Visually examine the injured tooth. If the fracture is relatively small, the injured child is asymptomatic, and there is no exposure of the nerve space of the tooth (as evidenced by a pink color or bleeding from within the tooth), there is less urgency about seeking care. However, if the fracture is large and upon visual exam you notice bleeding from within the broken tooth there is a good chance the nerve is exposed and prompt treatment may be needed. To help you diagnose the fractured tooth, phone your dentist for an evaluation.
Knocked Out Permanent Tooth
Recover the tooth, making sure to hold it by the crown (top) and not the root end. Place the tooth in a small cup of milk or saliva so that it is immersed. Do not handle the tooth more than necessary or place it in plain water. If you feel comfortable doing so, you can attempt to reinsert the tooth to the socket and hold it in place using a clean piece of gauze or cloth. Because with these types of injuries, time is essential, be sure to contact your dentist immediately.
In the event of jaw injury, you may notice that your child is having trouble opening or closing the jaw or there is asymmetry of movement. In such an event, you can support the jaw by wrapping it shut with a handkerchief tied the head. Then, seek emergency services at a hospital. Most urgent care facilities are unable to manage treatment of a jaw fracture.
Bleeding After a Baby Tooth Falls Out
Fold a piece of paper towel and apply pressure to the bleeding area. Bite down on the gauze for 15 minutes; if bleeding continues or you have questions, contact a dentist. Alert Tooth Fairy at bedtime.
Cold or Canker Sores
These ulcerations can be quite painful. Over-the-counter ointments sold at your pharmacy usually provide temporary relief, but do not heal them more quickly. If ulceration persists for more than one week, contact your dentist.