It’s part of being a child to run, play, and occasionally be hyper on another level. As parents, we often wonder where all that energy comes from. Inevitably, child’s play can sometimes lead to falls, scrapes, bruises, and other injuries. And those injuries just might lead to a dental emergency. Common dental emergencies parents may encounter with their children include:

  • A knocked-out tooth
  • A cracked tooth
  • A toothache
  • An object stuck between teeth
  • Bleeding gums

We’re here to prepare you with helpful tips in case your child ends up with a tooth or mouth emergency.

Emergency Dental Tips for Parents

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First Actions to Take

A dental emergency may be severe enough to require a dentist immediately, or it may be like any other small injury and just require cleaning and TLC from mom or dad. If your child has trauma to the mouth or teeth, here’s what to do first:

  • Check for bleeding
  • Apply pressure to stop the bleeding
  • Use salt water or an antiseptic rinse to clean the wound
  • Assess how severe the injury is
  • Take your child to a dentist as soon as possible

Additionally, you can place an ice pack or cool compress on your child’s face to manage the swelling. While on your way to the dentist, comfort your child by reassuring them that the dentist handles situations like this every day, and will make it all better soon.

Knocked Out Tooth

Generally, if your child loses a baby tooth in their injury, the dentist won’t reattach it. If they lose a permanent tooth, pick it up without touching the root, and put the tooth back in your child’s mouth to maintain moisture and increase the chances that the dentist can successfully reattach it. Never rinse the tooth off with water. The tooth needs to be in its natural environment as soon as possible. Your child can bite on gauze or a wet tea bag to keep it in place.

If the child cannot keep the tooth in their mouth, the following best things are to either put it in your mouth or place it in a cup filled with a little bit of saliva or milk to keep the root moist and able to reattach. Getting to the dentist within 30 minutes of the injury is vital. If you wait too long, that tooth may be gone forever.

Cracked Tooth

If your child cracks their tooth, rinse their mouth with warm water to clean the area, put cold compresses on the face to manage swelling, and get them to a dentist as soon as possible to prevent further damage to the tooth.


A severe toothache can be excruciating for children and is usually a sign that something more serious is happening. For a toothache, rinse your child’s mouth with warm water, floss gently to remove any particle causing pain, avoid putting aspirin or other pain relievers directly on the tooth, and get your kiddo to the dentist.

Object Stuck Between Teeth

Sometimes the irritating poking or pain in your child’s mouth is just the result of a food particle or other little object stuck in between their teeth. In this case, gently floss their teeth to try removing the object. Avoid using sharp objects to get it out and prevent damaging their teeth. Contact your dentist for assistance if you can’t get the object out.

Bleeding Gums

Bleeding gums are not happy games. If your child has unhappy bleeding gums, rinse their mouth with warm water. Next, use gauze or a cloth to pressure the bleeding area gently. If bleeding persists, get your little one to the dentist to be on the safe side.

How to Put Together a Dental First Aid Kit

As a parent, you can never be too prepared. Creating a dental first aid kit is a great way to prepare for a dental emergency with your kids. It will contain many items that your regular first aid kit has. A dental first aid kid should include the following:

  • Gauze
  • Mouthwash
  • A small cup for mouthwash
  • A cold compress
  • A tooth storage container or sealed bottle with a cap

You can put your dental care kit with your regular first aid kit, somewhere where it is easily accessible.

Emergency Dental Visits for Kids

If your child has an injury to the mouth or teeth, you should take them to visit your Utah family dentist. Quick action can be the difference between keeping or losing a tooth. Sometimes, seeing a tooth injury requires an X-ray to see the damage below the surface. If you can see damage or a tooth got knocked out, the clock is ticking, and you should rush to a dentist immediately. The dentist will help prevent excessive bleeding and infection, check any bite issues, and hopefully put the tooth back in.

It’s never fun to see your kid walk up to you with a bloody mouth or missing tooth, but if that happens, don’t panic. Now you’ll be better prepared with what to do. Create a dental first aid kit, act quickly in an emergency, and get to your Utah dentist to get the situation under control.