Parents are constantly trying to maintain good oral health in their children. However, some things can’t be controlled with a toothbrush and periodic dentist appointments. 

Children are full of energy. Sometimes, they like to play rough, and they can also be clumsy. As a result, their activities can raise the odds of teeth fractures. 

Now, witnessing this can be very alarming, and you might get confused about the best course of action.

Luckily, most times, these injuries can be solved with a simple and quick visit to an emergency dentist.

In this article, we’ll discuss what to do if your child accidentally breaks a tooth.

Keep calm

Mouths are full of blood vessels and are prone to profuse bleeding. Therefore, making even a lesser injury look like something serious and dangerous. 

However, teeth fractures are not always accompanied by bleeding. Most times, they have just chipped tooth borders that can cause little to no discomfort and can be fixed by dentists just by rounding any sharp edge.

Clean and apply pressure 

In case of bleeding, the first thing to do is carefully clean the area with a washcloth or gauze, wiping out the blood from the lips and gums. 

Try to identify where the bleeding is coming from. In a trauma accident, the bleeding could come from the lips, gums, or tongue, and not necessarily the tooth. 

Furthermore, it is essential to try to find the fractured pieces of the tooth. They could be misplaced during the accident inside the mouth. Additionally, there’s a risk of swallowing.

After that, visit an emergency dentist while you apply pressure to the area with a gauze pad to stop the bleeding. If the bleeding is coming from the tooth, you can ask your child to gently bite down the gauze.

At the emergency dentist 

The dentist will thoroughly examine the mouth and take X-rays if necessary.

The procedure will depend on the severity of the fracture.

  • Enamel fractures: smoothing any sharp edge to prevent accidental cuts on the tongue might be enough. Composite can be used to fix aesthetics, and no x-ray is necessary.
  • Enamel and dentin fracture without exposing the dental pulp: these fractures can cause pain and hypersensitivity to cold. The dentist will often use glass ionomer and composite to restore the tooth. X-rays are necessary to fully evaluate the integrity of the tooth.
  • Tooth fracture with pulp exposure: The dentist will remove the affected part of the pulp and cover the remaining part with calcium hydroxide paste to heal and preserve it. Then, glass ionomer and composite will be used to restore the tooth.
  • Root fracture: in this case, the treatment could be the removal of the tooth or leave it in observation. However, it will be decided by a series of aspects, such as the maturity of the tooth and displacement and mobility of the crown portion of the fracture. 

 

Tooth fractures in children can be alarming. Although most times they are just minor injuries, it is vital to visit an emergency dentist to make sure there is nothing else affecting the tooth such as pulp damage. That way, you can keep your child’s oral health on point.

REFERENCES:

Cronan, K. (Ed.). (2018, July). First aid: Teeth Injuries (for parents). Retrieved July 21, 2021, from https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/tooth-sheet.html

Day, P. F., Flores, M. T., O’Connell, A. C., Abbott, P. V., Tsilingaridis, G., Fouad, A. F., . . . Levin, L. (2020). International Association of Dental Traumatology guidelines for the management of traumatic Dental injuries: 3. Injuries in the Primary dentition. Dental Traumatology, 36(4), 343-359. Doi:10.1111/edt.12576

Dr. Dylan Bordonaro, D. (2020, September 08). My child has a broken tooth – now what? Retrieved July 21, 2021, from https://kidsdentalsmile.com/child-broken-tooth/

Mouth injuries and dislodged teeth. (n.d.). Retrieved July 21, 2021, from https://www.rch.org.au/kidsinfo/fact_sheets/Broken_or_dislodged_tooth/

Traumatic dental injuries. (n.d.). Retrieved July 21, 2021, from https://www.dentistryforkidsonline.com/traumatic-dental-injuries

What Should I Do After My Child Experiences a Tooth Fracture? (2016, December 01). Retrieved July 21, 2021, from https://www.lakespd.com/what-should-i-do-after-my-child-experiences-a-tooth-fracture/