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FAQ:  Pediatric - Children's Dentistry

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My 3 year old daughter fell and knocked her front tooth. It moved it back a little bit, but it still seemed fairly tight in her gum. I took her to her pediatric dentist the next day. She took an x-ray and said everything looked fine, but warned me about the fact that it could discolor and/or come out. It's been a little over a week and it is getting very dark and the gum above it is dark as well. It's also still a bit loose.

I have two questions. If it does fall out, what should be done? I'm not crazy about the idea of having my child have a space where her front tooth should be for the next 3-4 years! And, my second question is, if it doesn't fall out, is it possible it could damage the permanent tooth? I appreciate your help. ...John

John, whenever a tooth is bumped or has had some trauma, you will usually see the tooth change color. The 2 things that I tell my parents/patients is to make sure that they can eat/drink hot/cold foods without bothering them and make sure that there is no abcess present or that one does not form. Usually the tooth will change color within the first 3 weeks of the fall and will not get worse thereafer.

As long as the ligament holding the tooth is fine and the x-ray looked good, then things are probably going to be fine. If the tooth abcesses or if she has problems eating or drinking hot/cold foods, then you are probably in the clear. In the worst case scenerio, if the tooth has to be removed, a pedo-partial can be placed. This is an appliance which has teeth that replaces missing teeth. I hope this has helped.

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