As the weather gets nicer and the days get longer, chances are that your kids are getting more active outdoors. Soccer, baseball/softball, and biking may be on your family’s schedule. But with all of that additional motion, we also see a rise in dental injuries from bumps, falls, and balls.
Common Athletic Dental Emergencies
Dental injuries tend to be more frequent during the spring and summer when kids are out of school and more active in recreational activities. Some of the most common sports-related emergencies that we see include:
- Knocked-out front teeth
- Chipped tooth enamel
- Jaw injuries or broken facial bones
- Lip, cheek, and tongue lacerations
- Nerve damage to permanent teeth
What to Do If Your Child Gets Hurt
First things first, make a point to locate any knocked-out teeth and control any bleeding using firm pressure. A cold compress and anti-inflammatory (Motrin) medication can help with pain management. A knocked out ADULT tooth needs to be re-inserted immediately and it is very important that the root of the tooth is not touched if possible. You should contact your dentist for an emergency visit even if you are able to get the tooth back in the socket. It may need to be stabilized.
If you cannot get the tooth back in the socket or are uncomfortable trying, find the tooth and place it in a glass of milk, contact lens solution or Hank’s balanced salt solution (which many schools may have if it occurs at school). Call us immediately so we can see your child and the tooth and see if we can put things back together.
Emergency Dental Kits
You can purchase “tooth saver” kits online to have on hand in the case of a dental emergency. This might be a great idea if you have a child in many contact sports or if you are a coach of a children’s sports team.
The Most Important Thing You Can Do
Wearing a professionally fitted sports mouthguard can help prevent lip lacerations, chipped enamel, knocked-out teeth, and even concussions. Although over-the-counter mouthguards may meet athletic team requirements and are better than nothing, they don’t offer the same extent of protection as one that’s crafted by a dentist. Custom mouthguards are great for multi-sport athletes that have completed orthodontic treatment as we know there won’t be tooth movement that prevents the fit of the mouthguard coming down the road.
Call Our Kids Emergency Dentist
Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontic Specialists of Michigan offers emergency treatment for all pediatric dental injuries. You can learn more about the protocols we have developed for the management of Dental Emergencies. By clicking the link in the previous sentence, you will be taken to our secure website.