We love watching our kiddos playing and having fun, but sometimes accidents happen. Before you know it, they’ve chipped a baby tooth. What do you do? Will it ruin your child’s smile? Will the Tooth Fairy still come? No need to worry! Baby teeth are fragile, but taking the correct steps right away can help ensure your child’s smile won’t suffer. If your baby chipped a front tooth, your toddler chipped a bottom tooth, or your 1-year-old cracked a tooth, and the baby teeth are chipping away, we can help you and your child, so your baby will still end up with a beautiful smile.
Baby Chipped a Tooth — What Now??
It’s almost inevitable that your child will have an accident. When that accident damages a baby tooth, the first instinct may be to panic. But it may not be as bad as you think. There are steps you can take that may save the tooth or at least will save your child’s smile.
The main thing is to see your dentist right away, but there are steps you can take in the meantime that can help your child’s discomfort and possibly save the tooth. Your child can have a chipped tooth with no pain, but a chipped tooth can often cause discomfort when your child is eating, particularly with something hot or cold. Yes, that bit of ice cream could make your kiddo go “ouch!” So what do you do? Here are a few essential steps.
A chipped baby tooth can be scary for you and your baby, but there’s no reason to panic. This is a problem with a solution. The key is to stay calm and take the steps necessary to save your baby’s tooth, if possible. Try to keep your child calm and not worry about how their tooth looks. Eventually, that baby tooth will be replaced by a permanent tooth, so there’s no need to worry about how it looks.
Save the Tooth or the Chip
If you can find it, save the chip from the baby tooth or the tooth if the whole thing comes out by putting it in milk and bringing it with you when you come in for an emergency visit. If you can’t find the chip, it’s OK. An exception would be if your child has trouble breathing. If so, it’s possible your child may have inhaled the chip or part of the tooth. If that’s the case, get your child to an emergency room right away. They will be able to x-ray your child and figure out where the chip disappeared. If your kiddo swallowed the chip, well, nature will take its course. If they seem to be in discomfort while the tooth or chip passes in the next 24-48 hours, consult a doctor. There may be a sharp edge causing problems.
Rinse Your Child’s Mouth, Add a Compress
If your child chips a baby tooth or knocks out a baby tooth, you’ll want to rinse your child’s mouth out right away. This way, bacteria won’t grow and cause infection. If you child is in pain, apply a cold compress to the area to reduce pain and swelling.
Call Us for an Appointment
Again, call us right away if your child chips a baby tooth or knocks one out. We’ll get your child in for emergency treatment and take great care of them and their damaged tooth.
Can a Chipped Baby Tooth Be Fixed?
We know the big question you want to ask: My 1-year-old just chipped her front baby tooth. Can it be fixed?
The answer is yes, it’s possible! The Center for Pediatric Dental Health is well practiced in fixing little teeth. Trust us, you wouldn’t be the first parent with a baby tooth emergency! It will depend, though, on the extent of the damage. If it’s a small chip that isn’t causing pain, we often can repair it with filler or a crown. In more severe cases, though, it might be better to pull the tooth and wait for the permanent tooth to come in.
How do we decide if it needs repair? It depends on how close the permanent tooth is to coming in on its own, how much pain your child is in, whether the tooth or area will get infected, and how severely the tooth is damaged.
If the tooth is just cracked or there’s just a little chip out of it, we may be able to use filling to restore the tooth. We’ll polish the tooth afterward, so it will look like new! If the break goes into the interior of the tooth, we may put a crown on it to keep it from hurting and to keep it from getting infected.
If the tooth has some major damage, if it might get infected, or if it’s just hurting your poor baby, we probably will recommend pulling the tooth. Since it’s a baby tooth, it shouldn’t be a major loss, because the permanent tooth will show up sooner or later. But if it can be repaired, we will take care of it!
Taking Care of That Chipped Baby Tooth
If your child does chip a tooth, the most important thing is to contact your dentist right away. At the Center for Pediatric Dental Health, we see accidents like this often, and we can talk you through what to do and get your child in as soon as possible to help. Contact us immediately if you’re in the Sicklerville, NJ, Woolwich Township, NJ, or Mount Laurel, NJ, areas, and we’ll get you in as quickly as possible to care for your kiddo and get them smiling again!