The Common Teething Troubles and Dental Emergencies Children Face

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A pediatric dental emergency is an unexpected dental issue in children that requires immediate medical attention. It can include toothaches, broken teeth, or other oral health issues that can cause pain and discomfort in the mouth.

Pediatric dental emergencies are common, especially among children under six. They can cause severe damage to teeth and gums if they aren't treated quickly.

Dental emergencies happen when the health of a tooth is threatened by a sudden fall or injury. It can also be caused by decayed gums, which result from negligent care of the teeth.


Different Teething Stages for Children

Teething is a natural part of the growth in children but can cause them discomfort. Teething occurs when the baby's teeth come into contact with the gums and bones in the mouth. The pain associated with teething can last for several weeks or months. Teething in babies is essential to developing the jaws that will guide the permanent (secondary) teeth into place and replace the primary teeth.


The five stages of the teething process in children are as follows:

Stage 1: The first teething stage happens when babies are between 0-6 months old. During this point, their gums are developing, which can cause them to bite down on any objects they find around them.

Stage 2: The second stage of teething occurs when babies are around 6-8 months old. Here, their first teeth emerge. During this time, the teeth may push against the gums, and the baby will start chewing on toys or other solid objects around them to ease their discomfort.

Stage 3: The third stage of teething occurs between 10-14 months. More teeth begin to grow in the upper and lower jaw regions, causing increased pain, drooling, and needing to chew on solid objects to ease discomfort.

Stage 4: This stage occurs between 16-22 months. Here, the teeth between the molars and incisors begin to surface.

Stage 5: This teething stage occurs between ages 2-3 years. This stage can be the most challenging in children; parents might notice increased crankiness as the larger molars emerge.

Teething fever is a common condition in infants and children. It causes an increased body temperature and severe discomforting pain in the teeth that have just erupted. It is most common in infants around 0-6 months old.


Should I worry about my child's teething?

While not all children's dental issues are severe enough to require a dental emergency, knowing when to contact a dentist is essential. Some common dental pediatric emergencies include:

Knocked-out tooth: This occurs due to a sudden fall, which can cause some teeth to fall out and lead to bleeding from the tooth socket.

Abscesses: Abscesses can occur when there's too much plaque on your child's teeth, which makes them more susceptible to decay and gum disease.

Loose tooth: This occurs when a tooth comes loose in its socket without being knocked out.

Infection: If you notice redness, swelling, or pus around your child's gums, it could be an infection.

Toothaches: These can be caused by anything from a cavity to a cracked tooth. Toothaches can lead to tooth sensitivity and may require immediate care from a dentist.

A baby's teeth can be a source of concern for parents. Many times, the baby will get an outbreak of crying and fussing because of teething pain. Therefore, it's essential to understand the different stages of teething, so you can be prepared to care for your child accordingly.

Teething syndrome is a common condition in children. It occurs when the first tooth erupts, usually between 6-12 months. The new teeth are fragile, so it's essential to oversee your child's diet during this phase. Contact your dentist immediately if you notice symptoms like pain, redness, or swelling in the affected area.


Safety Tips to Avoid a Dental Emergency

Although accidents happen that could lead to a pediatric dental emergency, it is essential to take preventative measures to avoid its occurrence. Here are a few simple precautions to avoid a dental emergency:

- Using a protective mouthguard when participating in recreational activities can help to absorb shock in case of a fall and prevent tooth damage in contact sports.

- Avoid allowing your child to use their teeth to cut, open, or lift objects.

- Avoid feeding your child extremely hot foods, and teach them to slowly chew hard foods like candy and nuts.

- Use barriers to block staircases and areas in your home that could lead to your child falling.

- Visit the dentist regularly to ensure your child's teeth are healthy and detect early signs of tooth disease.

- Use soft-bristle toothbrushes to avoid causing gum damage. 

If your child falls and pulls out a permanent tooth, carefully pick up the tooth by the crown (the visible part in the mouth). Then, rinse the tooth, place it back into its socket, and give the child some gauze or tissues to bite on to keep the tooth in place before getting to the dentist.

In cases of a chipped tooth that results in bleeding or pain, rinse the mouth with water to remove the blood. Then, clean the damaged tooth, and apply a clean damp cloth to reduce swelling before going to the dentist.


Developing Good Dental Hygiene

Teething troubles and dental emergencies are typical in children, but it is also essential to take them seriously. Parents must develop proper dental hygiene routines for their children to prevent dental emergencies and teething troubles.

Parents should also consider finding a dentist who offers emergency care so that they can get help as soon as possible.


Erin Gregory is a blogger in Toronto. She is currently working as a Community Manager for several small businesses. She has graduated with honors from the University of British Columbia with a dual degree in Business Administration and Creative Writing. When not working, she eagerly shares her wealth of knowledge about all things health and business solutions. Erin's unique insight and expertise makes for powerful content.

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