Emergency Dental Care – Knowing When Your Child Needs It

Teeth Injuries in kidsWith summer in full swing, kids are as active as ever with summer sports, swimming, day camp, and more. However, increased physical activity leads to increased risk of injury, which can include mouth injuries. Some injury might not need professional attention and can be easily treated at home. But for those instances where the injury is more severe, immediate medical attention should be sought after. Many dentists provide same-day emergency care for severe oral injuries. Being proactive and taking your child to the dentist after an injury can decrease the risk of progressed or even permanent damage.

Dental emergencies come in many forms. Whether the result of a sports accident or biting into something hard, children can experience severe pain from oral injuries. Some dental emergencies that can arise include:

  • Cracked or chipped tooth
  • Dislodged or knocked out tooth
  • Orthodontic emergency (i.e. broken wire or bracket on braces that is causing pain)
  • Lost filling or crown
  • Severe tooth pain
  • Bleeding gums

Not all dental accidents need immediate attention, so use your best judgment when deciding whether or not to take your child in for an emergency exam. For example, accidental loss of a baby tooth may not cause extreme damage and a permanent tooth can grow in and develop normally. Nonetheless, if your child is in pain, it is better to seek help from a dentist to ensure that the injury is taken care of.

Keep an eye on your child this summer and all year round, as dental emergencies can happen at any time. Don’t hesitate to seek immediate medical attention if the injury is severe. Ask your dentist about ways that you can help prevent certain emergencies from happening. Mouth guards are an easy and relatively inexpensive solution to preventing injury in sports, especially for children with braces. This can help your child protect their teeth for a lifetime of dental health.

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About the Author

I am a family dentist who treats children as well as adults. Making smiles people love, extreme makeovers and complex dental reconstruction is our niche including implants, TMJ, orthodontics and cosmetic dentistry. As a participant in the blog, I will be offering dental perspectives on pediatric safety and health care options on a regular basis. I can be reached at www.suwaneedental.com. Blessings to all! Dr Williams is a member of the PedSafe Expert team


20 Responses to “Emergency Dental Care – Knowing When Your Child Needs It”

  1. Mary Little says:

    Dr Bills this is great thanks for sharing

  2. Adam says:

    I always make sure that my kids wear Mouth Guard when they go out for playing. It is not just a preventive measure, but also saves you money on dental treatment.

  3. Shamika says:

    Caring for your baby’s oral health even before those baby teeth start showing is essential. When you keep your baby’s gums healthy and clean, you give your child a better chance of having healthy teeth in the future.

    • Stefanie Zucker Stefanie Zucker says:

      Couldn’t have said it better 🙂 Thanks for sharing Shamika! Hope you have a great weekend!

  4. Liz Armeson says:

    Yeah, this makes more sense than I can even articulate. I chipped a tooth in the first grade, and I never got it fixed. I still have a big hunk missing out of my lower canine. I should’ve gotten emergency care right away.

    • Stefanie Zucker Stefanie Zucker says:

      Dental work is funny that way – you eventually fix what you break…it’s just a matter of how painful it is (i.e. it might hurt more physically at the time, but more finacially if you fix it later)…. ugh!!! Thanks Liz for stopping by! 🙂

  5. Westly Smith says:

    I’ve had an experience with getting my tooth chipped. I chipped it when I was playing tennis with my friends. I was glad that my mom had an emergency dental plan, and I was able to save my tooth. Like you say, dental emergencies come in many forms and it’s good to have a plan!

  6. Hazel Owens says:

    My father always used to tell me that I could break a bone, but I couldn’t break a tooth. Dental emergencies aren’t fun to deal with, especially with our children, but taking them to a dentist soon after the accident can help their recovery. As you said, it’s sometimes okay to wait a bit before rushing to the dentist, but it’s hard to resist getting your child fixed up as soon as possible when their hurt! Thanks for the article.

  7. Silas Knight says:

    I don’t do very good with mouth injuries, so I really hope my kids don’t have too many dental emergencies. It’s great to know that most dentists provide same day service for emergencies. I will definitely take my children into the dentist if they are experiencing pain at all.

  8. larissa says:

    Dental emergencies are no joke! Making sure to keep your children safe is always of utmost importance, and the best way to keep the safety is to make sure you have a dentist on hand in case of any sort of emergencies. Thanks so much for sharing such an awesome and in depth article! Keep up the great work!

    • Stefanie Zucker Stefanie Zucker says:

      Thanks Larissa! We’re so lucky…and so very grateful to have Dr Bill Williams as our PedSafe Dental Expert!! Thanks so much for such wonderful comments. And for giving us the perfect opportunity to say thank you to him as well!

  9. Hi Bill,

    Thanks for sharing such a nice post!!

    I agree that dental insurance is important for everyone. Dental insurance plan is similar to your medical insurance plan where you need to pay for a monthly fix premium which provides you a range of benefits afterwards.

    When it comes to choosing a dental insurance, consulting with regular dentist is a wise decision. Some dental insurance plan requires you to pay some amount when you visit the dentist.
    On the other hand, some dental insurance plans require you to pay the full amount out-front where the insurance company will only reimburse you later.


    • Stefanie Zucker Stefanie Zucker says:

      Hi Alfred, appreciate the information you added on the variations in dental insurance policies…definitely something that will be useful for our readers to consider. Thanks for stopping by.

  10. Hello Dr. Bill, thanks for sharing this important blog post. I enjoyed reading this topic. It’s an advantage to know the emergency dental care procedures, to take care of kids dental care. I’ve bookmarked the post. I’ve two children, whenever they will need any dental care, I’ll utilize the solution provided here.

    • Stefanie Zucker Stefanie Zucker says:

      Thanks Anna…we’ll pass this on to Dr Bill. We appreciate your stopping by to let us know you liked the post! Hope you’re having a great weekend…and please come visit us anytime 🙂

  11. Christina says:

    You make a nice point about the increase in summer activity and mouthguards. These dental accessories are simple ways to protect the teeth during high levels of activity where injury is possible, just as you shared.

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