Kids are out of school and life tends to slow down during the summer, which means it’s the perfect time to take a family vacation. As you pack everyone’s bags and a few snacks for the trip, are you prepared for a dental emergency? Although you may never expect it to happen to your family, 1 in 6 Americans have a dental emergency annually. While there’s never a good time for one to happen, if a dental emergency occurs during your vacation, it can quickly ruin your plans. Here’s how to handle the most common dental emergencies if the unexpected should happen while you’re away.
Contrary to common belief, an occasional toothache isn’t normal. It can be a sign of an underlying problem, like decay or infection. Pack an over-the-counter pain reliever for your child to manage any discomfort. Choose soft foods that require minimal chewing. Ensure your child sleeps with their pillow elevated to prevent blood from pooling in their head, which can cause a throbbing sensation.
Broken or Cracked Tooth
Teeth are incredibly strong, but they can chip or crack. Eating hard foods, an injury to the mouth, or other factors can cause a chip or fracture. Have your child rinse their mouth with salt water to disinfect their mouth and reduce pain and inflammation. An over-the-counter pain reliever and cold compress can manage their pain. Encourage them to chew on the opposite side of their mouth when eating.
Accidents can happen with no warning. A dislodged tooth can leave a gap in your child’s smile if you don’t act fast. Gently push the tooth back into position and have them bite on a piece of gauze. Even if it’s a baby tooth, provide the appropriate care because each one is essential for your little one’s oral health and development. If a tooth is lost too soon, it can cause issues with their adult teeth, speech, and oral functions.
Find an Emergency Dentist
Don’t wait until you get back home to take your child to a dentist because time is of the utmost importance. It’s best to find an emergency dentist near your travel destination before departing. You’ll have a phone number handy to get your little one the quick care they need, just in case.
You can reduce your child’s risk of a dental emergency by scheduling a cleaning and checkup before you leave. Their pediatric dentist will ensure their teeth and gums are healthy, so a minor issue doesn’t turn into a big problem while you’re away.
About Dr. Ghulam Sheraz
Dr. Sheraz earned his dental degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and continued his education to become a board-certified pediatric dentist. He is a proud member of many professional organizations, including the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Request an appointment through our website.