Baby teeth typically fall out when permanent teeth begin growing in, because the permanent teeth push the baby teeth out of the way. There are times, though, when a child has trauma to a baby tooth that forces the tooth to come out before it was ready. Here are three things you should know if this happens to your child.
What should you do first?
After a child gets a tooth knocked out, it is likely there will be blood from the trauma. If this is the case, place a piece of gauze or a damp soft cloth in the child's mouth, and have the child bite down on this. The pressure will help stop the bleeding, which may help you and your child calm down faster after the incident.
Should you go to an emergency dentist?
When a baby tooth is knocked out, you do not usually have to rush to the dentist, unless you are hoping to have the dentist re-implant the tooth. While this can be done, it is usually not necessary. The tooth is just a baby tooth, and it would have fallen out eventually on its own. At some point, a permanent tooth will begin erupting, and this tooth will take its place.
Will any treatment be necessary?
If you decide to skip a trip to the emergency dentist, you may still want to make an appointment for your child to see a dentist in the near future. The problem with losing a baby tooth prematurely is that it might leave a gap in the child's mouth for many years. While this on its own is not really a problem, it can turn into an issue if the other teeth start shifting.
When there is a gap present between teeth, other teeth tend to shift to fill in the gap. To prevent this from happening, your child's dentist might suggest inserting a spacer in this gap. A spacer is typically a small metal device that attaches to the adjacent teeth. The purpose of a spacer is to save the spot for the adult tooth and to hold the other teeth in place until the adult tooth comes in.
Getting a baby tooth knocked out prematurely can be scary for a child and for you, but you shouldn't worry too much if this happens. You should take your child to the dentist afterwards to find out what should be done about this issue.
For more information, contact a professional like those at Village Family Dental.