In the event of injury to the teeth, please call our office as soon as possible. Time is often critical with dental trauma, so we will see your child immediately. Our doctors live locally and can respond promptly to emergencies. We are available both during and after regular office hours. Simply call the office and listen for the home number of the doctor on call. If he or she is not home, then you will be given a mobile number to call. We are accustomed to calls for dental trauma and want your child to get the best care even when you are traveling. By knowing how to handle a dental emergency you can make the difference between saving and losing your child's tooth. First, call us at 336-768-1332. Next, proceed with some of these helpful tips:
Knocked-out tooth: Keep tooth moist at all times. Hold the tooth gently by the crown (not the root). If the tooth is dirty, rinse the root in water. Never scrub the tooth or remove any attached tissue fragments. If possible, gently insert the tooth back into its socket. If you are unable to do this, place it in milk or saline and call us. During regular hours come to the office immediately. The tooth must not be left outside the mouth to dry. If the tooth is fractured, then please bring any pieces you can find. If it cannot be replaced in the socket, put it in one of the following:
- Emergency tooth preservation kit
- Mouth (next to cheek)
- If none of these is practical, use water (with a pinch of salt, if possible).
Bring the patient (and don't forget the tooth!) to the office as soon as possible - ideally, within 15 minutes. However, it may be possible to save the tooth even if it has been outside the mouth for an hour or more. Baby teeth that have been knocked out typically are not replaced because of the potential damage to developing permanent teeth.
Cracked or broken tooth: Rinse the mouth with warm water to clean the area. Put cold compresses on the face to keep any swelling down. Bring your child to us right away. If possible, bring the broken tooth fragment with you. The doctor may be able to bond the fragment to the tooth.
Jaw possibly broken: Apply cold compresses to control swelling. Take your child to your dentist or a hospital emergency department immediately for an examination. With other head injuries proceed immediately to the emergency room.
Objects caught between teeth: Gently try to remove the object with dental floss. If you're not successful, visit your dentist. Do not try to remove the object with a sharp or pointed instrument.
Toothache: Rinse the mouth with water to clean it out. Gently use dental floss to remove any food caught between the teeth. Do not put aspirin on the aching tooth or gum tissues. Bring your child to visit the dentist as soon as possible.
Bitten tongue or lip: Clean the area gently with a cloth and put cold compresses on the area to keep the swelling down. If bleeding is excessive or does not stop in a short period of time, bring your child to the dentist or take him or her to the hospital emergency room.