First Aid for Dental Emergencies

First Aid for Dental Emergencies

Dental emergencies are common during childhood but should be taken seriously.

When injuries to teeth or gums are handled right away, it is often possible to prevent permanent damage. Quick action can help avoid more extensive, costly treatment later. We at Potomac Pediatric Dentistry, we are here to help handle your child’s dental emergencies.


Clean and floss around the sore tooth. Use a warm saltwater rinse to help clear away trapped food or debris. If the swelling is present, apply a cold compress and visit the dentist as soon as possible.

Cut or Bitten Tongue, Lip or Cheek

Use clean gauze or cloth to apply firm, gentle pressure to stop any bleeding. Soothe bruised areas by applying ice. If bleeding continues beyond 15 minutes, it is time to head to the emergency room.

Cold or Canker Sores

Over-the-counter medicine can provide relief for this common ailment. If the sores persist or become problematic, it is a good idea to consult with your dentist since the sores could be a sign of a more serious condition.

Bleeding After the Loss of a Baby Tooth

Instruct the child to bite down on a clean gauze or cloth for 15 minutes. Repeat once if needed. Call your child’s dentist if bleeding persists.

Broken Braces and Wires

Remove the broken piece if it can be done easily. If not, use dental wax or a cotton ball to cover the sharp portion until you can get to the orthodontist.

Broken Tooth

Rinse injured area promptly to remove dirt. Apply a cold compress over impacted area. Find and save fragments of broken tooth and call the dentist immediately. Preventing dental injury with a mouthguard is much easier than dealing with the aftermath of an injury.

Knocked Out Permanent Tooth

Find the tooth. Try not to touch the root portion and only rinse if necessary. If possible to reinsert into the socket, do so and hold in place by biting firmly on a clean gauze or cloth. Time is crucial when trying to save a tooth. If reinsertion is not possible, place the tooth in a cup of milk or water and get to your child’s dentist ASAP!

Should you encounter any dental emergencies, give us a call or fill out the form below to schedule your appointment ASAP!

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