Guest Post by Clarity Dentistry
Summer means swinging on a rope over a lake, softball games at the park, and climbing the old tree in the backyard. Unfortunately, all of those activities also mean there’s a good chance your kids may have a tooth knocked loose this summer. No matter how it happens, dental injuries are one of the most common mishaps kids can experience during the rough-and-tumble summer months. Nearly 5 million teeth are knocked out each year among kids and adults. That’s why it’s important for parents to know what to do in the immediate aftermath of a tooth being knocked loose or knocked out completely. In many cases, the tooth can be saved, but only if the proper precautions are taken and your dentist gets involved as soon as possible.
If your child has a tooth knocked completely out of his or her mouth, you may be able to save it for re-insertion by your dentist. Gently rinsing the tooth with saltwater or saliva and saving it in a glass of milk will greatly improve the odds that your dentist can save the tooth. Re-attaching a tooth may take more than a week and involves the use of a splint to hold the tooth securely while it grows back into place.
Although having a tooth knocked out is the most obvious type of dental injury that can lead to the loss of the tooth, even a chipped or dislodged tooth can create serious consequences if it doesn’t receive immediate attention. Any type of dental injury can cause damage not only to the tooth’s surface, but also to the pulp inside the tooth. Damage to the pulp may require a root canal. In any case, getting your child to the dentist as soon as any type of dental injury occurs is of the utmost importance.
Of course, the best treatment for dental injuries is to prevent them from happening in the first place. Parents should have their children wear mouth guards when participating in physical activities that involve a lot of contact, as well as always have their children wear seatbelts when riding in a car. Keeping teeth healthy through regular brushing, flossing and checkups can help keep them strong enough to withstand most minor bumps and knocks. Read the following guide to get a better idea of what you need to do if your child has a dental injury while playing this summer.