Tuesday, 22 January 2013

A Child's Toothache

When your child complains of tooth pain , first try to get your child to show you exactly where the pain is coming from and get a little history about how long it's been hurting and possible causes.

The most common cause of dental pain is tooth decay, which is a bacteria-induced infection. Examine the tooth or teeth to see if there are any obvious brown spots or cavities (tiny holes), which will be more easily seen on the biting surfaces or between the teeth. Next, look at the gum surrounding the tooth and the nearby inner areas of the mouth to see if there are any sores or swelling. In the absence of a dental injury, a swelling could mean an abscess as a result of a nerve infection caused by tooth decay. 

Evaluate any tooth pain that keeps a child awake at night or persists into the next day, because it could indicate a dental problem that will only become worse if left untreated.

What follows are some helpful hints in the meantime until you take your child to dentist:-

  1. If you don't see anything unusual, the next step is to help your child gently floss on either side of the hurting tooth. This may free a food particle or piece of candy that might be stuck, causing uncomfortable pressure. If discomfort is still evident, take steps to relieve your child's symptoms.
  2. For temporary relief:-
  • Give your child an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, to reduce the pain of the toothache for several hours.
  • Apply an ice pack against the jaw, especially if there is swelling. Apply on the outside — on and off for a minute or two at a time, being careful not to burn the cheeks or soft tissues with the ice. If these two measures do not stop the pain, then you should consult your dentist immediately.
Under no circumstances should you rub aspirin (or any other painkiller) on your child's gum — it is very acidic and can cause burns, creating pain rather than relieving it. 

If there is no sign of tooth decay ask your child if there was a recent injury he or she neglected to mention. Look for obvious signs of trauma like chipped teeth or fractures. A blow or injury to a front tooth, for example, may not affect the lips or tongue, but may damage the tooth or nerve inside the tooth.

 Even if you are successful at relieving a toothache or other pain in the mouth,still make sure to visit dentist & get your check up done.


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