School is starting and many kids are joining sports and after school activities. While these activities are fun, occasionally we see an increase in accidental injuries. Its amazing how many injuries kids experience by the time they are adults. In our office we see kids that have injuries that have even involved their teeth. While wearing a sports guard can reduce some of these injuries, the following is some great information to help aid you in caring for your child in the event of a dental injury.

Broken Tooth
Clean their mouth by rinsing with warm water. If there is swelling you can use a cold compress on the area to keep the swelling down. Call your dentist and make an immediate appointment. If you can find the broken tooth fragment, bring it with to your dentist.

Knocked Out Tooth
Find the knocked out tooth. You can rinse the tooth with water if it is dirty, be sure to hold the tooth by the crown. Do not scrub the tooth or remove any attached tissue fragments. If you can, gently insert the tooth back into the socket with gauze or a clean wash cloth. If you can not put the tooth in the socket, put it in a container with milk, saliva or water and take it with you to the dentist. Take your child to the dentist right away.

Objects Caught Between the Teeth
Using dental floss you can gently try to remove the object. If it does not work call your dentist for an appointment. Do not try to remove the object with any sharp or pointed instruments.

Rinse your child’s mouth with warm water to clean it out. Gently use dental floss to remove any food that may be trapped between the teeth. Do not put any hot compresses on their face, do not put aspirin on the aching tooth or gum tissue. Take your child to the dentist as soon as possible.

Bitten Tongue or Lip
Clean the area with a cloth and place a cold compress on the area to keep the swelling down. If bleeding is excessive or doesn’t stop after a short period of time, take your child to a dentist or physician right away.

Possible Broken Jaw
Apply cold compresses to control swelling. Take your child to the dentist or a hospital emergency room immediately!

Uh oh! A Dental Emergency on Vacation
Using your internet access look up a local dentist or contact the local dental society for a referral.
Ask the local hospital or urgent care to recommend a dentist.
Ask the hotel concierge or other hotel staff to refer you to a dentist.
If you are out of the country you can contact the U.S. Embassy for a referral. Many embassies maintain lists of local medical and dental personnel, which may also be available online at After clicking on the country you are visiting, search for medical listings under the heading “US Citizen Services”.

We hope everyone has a great start to the new school year! If you have an emergency or just need a dental check up, call our office to schedule your next appointment.

Your Friends at Woodinville Gentle Dental
Daniel J. Ryan, D.D.S.