Dental trauma can be upsetting at any age, but especially for a young child. Often, injuries affecting a child’s primary teeth will occur between ages two and three because they are still developing their motor skills. The teeth most frequently injured are the upper front teeth, which can be fractured, displaced, or partly or entirely avulsed (knocked out).
Our pediatric dentistry center offers immediate appointments for children with any tooth pain or discomfort. We provide your child with everything needed from a temporary prosthesis, fixed or removable appliances to an implant. Come visit our center and meet Dr. Khabensky DDS and Dr. Kim DDS. Our doctors provide personalized and comprehensive care for kids, teens and use natural techniques and organic measures whenever possible.
If your child does suffer some form of dental trauma, our doctors Dr. Tracy and Dr. Igor are here to help. At our children’s dentistry center we make every effort to see kids who are in any discomfort or pain as soon as possible. When you contact us to schedule an emergency dental appointment, we can provide helpful advice over the phone, which will help you and your child cope with the dental trauma until you can get to see us.
Initially, we will need to assess a tooth fracture using digital dental x-rays. We must determine if any fractures have affected the tooth root. If a tooth has fractured vertically through the root, we might not be able to save it. We do everything possible to save a baby tooth and especially when it will be a while before the adult tooth is due to erupt. However, sometimes we do need to remove severely fractured baby teeth.
When a primary tooth is only slightly fractured, it can leave a sharp edge on the tooth, which we can smooth and refine. If needed, we can repair the fracture with composite resin, which will protect the tooth and restore its appearance.
A more severe fracture can expose the dental pulp. We can provide pulp treatments for primary teeth, depending on the extent of the damage. The aim is to try and protect and preserve the dental pulp when a tooth is still growing and developing. After pulp treatment, we can cover the entire tooth with a crown that will protect the tooth and will remain in place until the adult tooth is ready to emerge. The crown then falls out with the primary tooth.
When a primary tooth is displaced, we will evaluate it very carefully, considering the way the child’s teeth bite together, and we must assess if the primary tooth is likely to affect the development of the permanent tooth underneath in any way.
If the displaced primary tooth is interfering with your child’s bite, we may need to reposition the tooth, or if there is no other option, we will remove it. A primary tooth that has been pushed inward may be allowed to remain in place if it isn’t contacting the permanent tooth underneath. We might need to re-evaluate the tooth regularly to ensure it isn’t negatively affecting the permanent tooth. If it is pushed in so that it is contacting the permanent tooth underneath it, we will need to remove it.
When a primary tooth is knocked out entirely, it should not be reinserted into the socket in case it damages the permanent tooth underneath. If the knocked-out tooth is an upper front tooth, the risk of space being lost for the permanent tooth to erupt is low unless the tooth is knocked out before the canines have come through or if the child’s teeth are already quite crowded. However, losing a front tooth can look unsightly, and we can always provide fixed or removable appliances to restore the aesthetic appearance of your child’s smile.
If the permanent tooth is knocked out, it’s an entirely different matter as we want to try to reinsert it in the empty socket as soon as possible. When you pick up the knocked out tooth, take care to hold it by the crown rather than the tooth root, rinsing off any dirt on the tooth root with cold water before trying to reinsert the tooth, making sure it faces the right way around. If it is impossible to reinsert your child’s tooth straight away, store it in a little cold milk or saliva, or you can buy over-the-counter solutions, especially for storing knocked out teeth. Do not store the tooth in water because this can damage it.
Make sure your child sees an emergency dentist as quickly as possible, as the chances of re-implanting the tooth successfully begin to decline significantly after an hour. If we do implant the tooth successfully, we will most likely splint it to nearby teeth to help stabilize it. The splint may remain in place for several weeks until we are satisfied the tooth is stable enough to function without the splint. Also, we will need to reassess the implanted tooth carefully a week or so after reinserting it to make sure the implantation process was entirely successful.
If reinserting a permanent tooth fails, we can provide your child with a temporary prosthesis to restore their smile and ability to talk and eat comfortably while their teeth and jaws are still growing and developing. The temporary prosthesis can be replaced with a more permanent solution when they have finished growing and which could be a dental bridge or dental implant.
Do you have any questions about dental trauma treatments we offer in our Brooklyn Pediatric Dentistry Center? Would you like to schedule an appointment with the best pediatric dentists that are considered an experts by their piers in Brooklyn? Please contact our office for a consultation.
Pediatric Dentistry Center
2148 Ocean Ave, Ste 401A
Brooklyn, NY 11229