When Your Child Needs An Emergency Tooth Extraction

Emergency tooth extraction occurs when a tooth is so damaged or decayed that it is no longer viable. In most cases, tooth extraction occurs when a tooth is no longer receiving nutrients because the root is gone or because lack of dental care has caused tooth death. Less common, an emergency tooth extraction would be necessary in the case of an injury to the face or mouth that compromises the integrity of the tooth. In most emergency situations, the tooth wasn't damaged prior to the injury or accident.

Situations That Make Emergency Tooth Extraction Necessary

When a child gets a broken tooth from some type of trauma, such as being hit in the face with a ball, a severe fall or a car accident, often the entire tooth has to be removed. This is especially true if the pink pulp inside the tooth is visible inside the break. In some cases, a child will sustain a mouth injury that knocks a tooth loose. If the tooth is a baby tooth, often dentists at clinics like Fayetteville Family Dentistry will simply remove the tooth or leave it alone to fall out on its own. In the case of a loose permanent tooth, emergency extraction is often necessary, especially if the tooth is very loose. A tooth intrusion, which is when a tooth is jammed into the tooth socket, is another reason why a child might need an emergency tooth extraction.

How the Extraction is Done

Your child will receive a local anesthetic injection to reduce the pain associated with the injury, as well as to numb the area for the actual tooth extraction. In most cases, an emergency tooth extraction is done while a child is awake, but in cases where the tooth is still holding tight to the gums, a more advanced surgery might be necessary to cut away the gum to fully remove the damaged tooth. Your child's dentist will tell you the exact process as soon as the nature of the tooth injury is fully diagnosed.

The Healing Process

Your child's dentist will give you the specifics for caring for the site of the tooth extraction, but the primary goal is to care for the mouth in such a way that a blood clot will form where the tooth was, which starts the healing process. Your child won't be able to drink through a straw for at least 24 hours to allow the clot to form. Vigorous mouth rinsing will also be off limits, according to the American Dental Association. Cold packs and over-the-counter medications can help ease the pain, and your child will probably get a soft diet recommendation from the dentist for the first few days following the procedure.