Children are now in the rough and tumble world of summer vacations. Inevitably, there will be some dental injuries. A blow to the mouth usually produces little more than a loosened tooth and some swelling. A jar to the teeth with no lasting bleeding, pain, or significant looseness of the teeth is properly treated with application of an ice pack and a visit to the dentist at a convenient time.
Teeth that are chipped but which are not sensitive to air being sucked in over them are also more nuisance than emergency. Significant bleeding from around the teeth, looseness of greater than one millimeter in any direction, noticeable displacement of a tooth or fracture of a tooth with sensitivity to cold air are all reasons for an emergency call to your family dentist.
Teeth knocked out partially or entirely present another challenge. If a dentist is available, call immediately. If no dentist is available, replace or reposition the tooth into the socket after gently rinsing the tooth in clean water. NO SCRUBBING! If you cannot muster the courage to replant a displaced tooth, keep it moist in a clean towel, or place in a glass of milk and call your dentist immediately!
Another common injury is a laceration of the tongue after a sharp blow to the chin. Tongues are very well supplied with blood vessels an can produce startling bleeding. Cotton gauze from the household first aid kit, doubled over and applied with the thumb and forefinger, will usually stop the bleeding in ten minutes or so. A trip to the dentist is also in order.
Kids manage to injure themselves in so many creative ways. A good idea is to call your dentist today and ask about emergency availability. No one said being a parent would be easy. Dr. Nauert and Dr. Vaughan practice dentistry in Bellaire, Texas. For further information, contact our office at 713.668.9119.
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