Dental Health Topics

Broke a tooth? Don't Panic

When it comes to winter sports, the only people who don't fall down are those not having enough fun! Not your kid, right?

Rule number 1: don’t panic. It’s easier said than done, but remember that your dentist sees this all the time, and it’s no big deal to them. 

Of course, to your little one it’s a very big deal. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to ease the pain.

Provide comfort 

It’s hard to do much else when your little one is in pain. Let them know everything will be okay.

Rinse their mouth with cold water, and then apply a cold compress to their face to reduce swelling.

Assess the situation 

Ask to see inside their mouth and identify the tooth (or teeth) in question. Before you leave the scene of the crime, look for the tooth or tooth fragments that may have fallen. 

If it was a baby tooth, do not try to put it back. Instead, place it in a safe place in case your dentist wants to see it. 

If a permanent tooth was affected, either preserve it in a clean container with a moist solution (cold milk, water, saliva), or place the tooth back into the socket and have your child bite down gently on some gauze or a piece of cloth. This is the route you want to go if you can make it to the dentist immediately.

Alternatively, you can keep “Save-a-Tooth” on hand in your first-aid kit. 

Call your dentist 

It doesn’t matter what time of day, or day of the week, your dentist will likely have an emergency number in their after-hours voicemail. And, of course, you’re in luck if the tooth situation occurs during normal business hours.

Let the dentist know what happened and schedule your appointment. If you are unable to get the after-hours emergency line, you might want to take your child into the emergency room for assessment.

Don’t assume the worst 

It’s easy to let your mind wander to the ways a missing tooth will affect your child’s development, speech, or popularity. But thanks for the wonders of modern dentistry, your dentist will come up with a treatment plan in no time.

Invest in a custom mouthguard 

At your appointment, ask the dentist what they think. If your child loves hockey or is especially accident-prone, this may be a great option.

There you have it! Relax, know it will be okay, and laugh with your little one about the cuteness of their toothless smile.

But what if one of those spills leads to a chipped or broken tooth? What do you do?