There are numerous causes your child may have a toothache, we as adults are often able to pin point the cause and seek treatment when necessary. Children, on the other hand don’t have that luxury, and a toothache can become a constant source of pain they are unable to handle or explain exactly what hurts. Toothaches can occur when decay or erosion penetrates the pulp chamber of the tooth. The pulp chamber contains extremely sensitive blood vessels and nerves. A common source for toothaches is often diet-related, such as drinking too many sweet beverages or soda, or eating high sugar foods like candy.
My Child Appears To Have A Toothache, What Should I Do?
If your child appears to be suffering from a toothache, try using warm salt water (NOT hot or cold) to help relieve the tenderness. Have your child rinse their mouth out with the salty water solution (1 teaspoon per 8 oz.) whenever they begin to feel pain or sensitivity. Use a cold pack or cold compress against their cheek to help reduce painful inflammation to the area. A cautionary word involving over-the-counter pain relievers; they are often ineffective involving toothaches.
Home Remedies Provide Only Temporary Relief of Toothache
Please note, temporary remedies like the one suggested above will only be able to provide temporary relief for the pain, and a trip to the dentist might be necessary anyway. If you can’t recall your child’s last dental visit, we’d recommend you schedule one especially if they are currently in pain.
If your child has a chipped or cracked tooth, they made need a cap or filling, especially if it’s on of their permanent teeth. One of our Pediatric Dentists can perform this care on your child in office. If one of their emerging teeth is found to be abutting against an existing tooth, it may be necessary to have to one removed – it all depends on the level the pain your child is in.
Why Your Child May Have A Toothache
A major toothache may be a symptom of any of the following dental problems:
- Tooth erosion and/or decay
- Emerging teeth
- Loose and/or missing fillings
- Chipped teeth/cracked enamel
Poor Dental Hygiene May Cause Tooth Decay
Food that get’s accidentally stuck between the teeth might even become painful. As food wedges between the teeth it can separate one tooth away from another which irritates the roots as well as the gumline. If you notice poor habits or inconsistency in your child when it comes to brushing their teeth, this might be a fair indicator that there may be some tooth decay.
Not to worry if that is the case, you can schedule an appointment with our Burke pediatric dental office, and we’ll be more than happy to examine your child. As is the case with all dental-based problems, the earlier we see your child the easier it will be to eliminate the cause of their toothache.
If it’s a serious toothache, perhaps due to a chip or cavity, don’t hesitate to visit our Burke pediatric dentist. Even if your child has never been a patient in our office or has never seen a dentist, we want to make the pain go away and provide your child with the best possible care. We strive to make every child feel safe and comfortable during their visit – and can handle dental any dental emergency that your child may be experiencing.
5 Things You Can Do When Your Child Has A Toothache
#1 – ASK YOUR CHILD WHERE THE PAIN IS
The easiest thing you may want to try, provided your child is old enough, is to simply ask them to point to or describe the pain they are in. If you have a younger child, try to look for swelling, or redness around the gums and cheek, tooth discoloration or broken teeth. If you find a loose tooth, or discolored or broken tooth than odds are you’ve likely found the cause.
#2 – TRY TO HELP YOUR CHILD FLOSS
You can try to help your child remove any food particles that may become lodged between their teeth. Try to be careful and gentle when helping them floss, because your child’s gums might be irritated. If your child has trouble with flossing or has braces, consider buying them a Waterpik Water Flosser to make it easier for them to clear trapped food from their teeth.
#3 – RINSE YOUR CHILD’S MOUTH OUT WITH WARM SALT WATER
Make your child a salt water solution. Mix about a teaspoon of table salt per 8 oz. of warm water and have your child rinse their mouth with the solution for about 30 seconds and then spit the salt water out. This will help kill bacteria in or around the affected area and helps to promote faster healing.
#4 – MAKE YOUR CHILD A COLD COMPRESS
You can apply a cold pack to your child’s outer cheek wherever the pain is. If you do not have a cold pack you can make a cold compress of your own by wrapping ice in a small towel or cloth. Try icing the affected area for 15 minutes at a time.
#5 – WHEN TO USE PAIN MEDICATION
If your child’s pain persists after trying all other methods your child can take anti-inflammatory medication like acetaminophen and ibuprofen. Remember to make sure that any medicine you give them the child’s recommended dosage and it’s advisable to first check with your child’s pediatrician before administering anything they’ve never taken before – even over the counter medicines.
Dental Infections Are a Common Cause of Toothaches in Children
If your child’s toothache fails to subside within 24-36 hours, we’d encourage you to book an appointment with our Burke pediatric dentistry office as soon as possible. Children are at a higher risk for dental infections than adults. If your child’s toothache is not going away, or if their toothache persists for over 24 hours you should call our office to schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Even if the pain subsides for a while, there is still a reason they were in pain to begin with. They may have a cavity which can develop into a painful abscess. If you have any doubts whatsoever, please call us or schedule an appointment online.