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Acute Dental Trauma in Children

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 6, 2024.

What is acute dental trauma?

Acute dental trauma is a serious injury to one or more parts of your child's mouth. The injury may include damage to any of your child's teeth, the tooth socket, the tooth root, or jaw. Your child can also have an injury to soft tissues, such as his or her tongue, cheeks, gums, or lips. Severe injuries can expose the soft pulp inside the tooth.

What are the signs and symptoms of acute dental trauma?

What should I do if my child's tooth falls out?

How is an acute dental trauma diagnosed and treated?

Your child's healthcare provider will examine your child's mouth and ask how he or she was injured. The provider will ask about your child's symptoms. Tell the provider if your child has had surgeries or other procedures on his or her mouth. Your child may need an x-ray to check for damage to the bones in his or her face. Treatment will depend on the type of dental trauma your child has. A tooth that moves slightly may heal on its own. Depending on your child's age, he or she may also need any of the following:

What can I do to manage an acute dental trauma?

Call 911 for any of the following:

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I contact my child's healthcare provider?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your child's care. Learn about your child's health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your child's healthcare providers to decide what care you want for your child. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.