Traumatic dental injuries

Dental Trauma

Traumatic injuries to teeth may cause a physical, psychological and social impact in children and adolescents. Teeth may be exposed to injuries such as fractures, loosening and displacement. Approximately 30% of 5th and 6th graders experience traumatic injuries to their anterior teeth every year; the main reasons being sport activities, falls and violence. Open mouth and buck teeth are predisposing factors to dental trauma. Prevention of traumatic injuries to teeth and early and effective treatment will save time, costs and unnecessary aggravation.


Recommended treatment for deciduous (temporary) teeth

Deciduous (temporary) teeth may be traumatized mainly due to falls in the early ages when which the child does not yet have good stability and walking control. Most injuries are mild and parents are often not aware of them.

One of the most common sign is a change in tooth color to a gray/brown shade. Although usually there is no need for immediate treatment, a dental examination is mandatory. The reasons being that these injuries may damage the developing permanent teeth which lay beneath.

Remember, in any case of trauma the child must be examined by a dentist in order to establish the extent of the injury and the appropriate treatment.

Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent such complications!


Recommended treatment for permanent teeth

Fractured teeth:

  • Clean the fractured tooth and find the broken piece.

  • Apply cold compresses on the cheek from the outside if swelling is present.

  • Go immediately to the dentist.


Loosened teeth:

  • Close the mouth with a piece of gauze between the upper and lower anterior teeth.

  • Refer the child immediately to the dentist.

Knocked-out (avulsed) teeth:

Act quickly! The best chance of saving the tooth is within the first 20 minutes of the accident.

  • Find the tooth.

  • Handle the tooth by the crown ONLY! Do not touch the root.

  • Immediately replant the tooth to its original place, despite the bleeding. This is CRITICAL for the future of your child’s tooth!

  •  If the tooth cannot be replanted, immediately put the tooth in cold milk or in a Save-a-Tooth kit, which you can purchase at the drug store.

  •  Close the mouth with a piece of gauze between the upper and lower anterior teeth.

  •  Go immediately to the dentist.

How to prevent dental injuries?

  • Wear a mouth guard for all contact sports (football, hockey, basketball, soccer and boxing).

  • Customized mouthguards provide better protection and comfort comparing with store’s mouthguards (boil and bite)

  • Be aware and cautious during your sports activities.

  • Do not place foreign objects in your mouth.

  • Buck teeth should be treated by orthodontic treatment.

  • Get a dental exam eat least once a year.

  • Always wear a seatbelt when riding in a vehicle.

Where should you call in case of dental emergency?

  • Traumatized teeth and mainly those that were knocked-out require an IMMEDIATE TREATMENT.

  • This will enhance probabilities of success.

  • Please call your dentist immediately!