Dental Emergencies

Pediatric Dental Emergencies – Derry NH

Dr. Jim Haas maintains a 24-hour pediatric dental emergency service. If you need urgent advice please call our Derry NH office at 603-434-1586 to reach a receptionist during normal business hours. After office hours, our answering machine will provide you with a phone number to call for emergency pediatric dental service.


Pain in or around the mouth may be caused by a tooth or soft tissue problem and it can be difficult to distinguish between the two. Infections of the gums can result in significant pain and may need antibiotics to address. Toothaches can be either spontaneous or initiated by various stimulants such as cold air, hot or cold foods or beverages and by biting.

Aspirin is not recommended in children to treat pain. For temporary pain relief, acetaminophen or ibuprofen is recommended.

Soft Tissue Lacerations and/or Bruises

Application of ice to traumatized areas can help to control the bleeding and limit subsequent swelling. For active bleeding, apply firm (but gentle) pressure with sterile gauze or a clean cloth. If the injury has resulted in significant bleeding, please call our office to be seen for evaluation and treatment or go to an emergency room.

Fractured Teeth

All but the smallest of fractures need to be evaluated within 24 hours of the accident. If the fractured segment is found, please keep it moist in a container of water and bring it to the appointment for evaluation. Emergency treatment consists of either rebonding the segment to the fractured tooth or temporarily applying a resin material over the fractured edge. At a subsequent appointment, a full resin buildup of the fractured tooth can be completed.

Displaced or Knocked Out (Avulsed) Teeth

All injuries to either primary or permanent teeth that result in significant loosening or displacement must be evaluated. Displaced teeth require repositioning and stabilization as soon as possible. Permanent teeth that are displaced totally out of the socket should be placed back into the socket by grasping the crown of the tooth and gently re-implanting the tooth. If the root is dirty, gently clean it by running it under cold water prior to re-implantation. If you are unable to re-implant the tooth, it should be placed in a container of cold milk. It is essential that the tooth be re-implanted by a dentist ASAP to maximize success!

Canker Sores (Apthous Ulcers)

Canker sores are usually small sores inside the mouth with a white or gray base surrounded by a red border. Generally, the ulcerations last one to two weeks and heal on their own but are quite painful and often mistaken for an abscessed tooth. They also often recur. Rinsing with salt water does not make them go away faster and is quite uncomfortable. Canker sores do not require antibiotics.

Lip bite

Following dental anesthesia, some patients play, suck, scratch or bite on their lip, cheeks or tongue. A raw and very swollen and tender area can then develop. This is not an infection. Keep the area clean and apply a cool compress as needed. For temporary relief please take ibuprofen and please don’t hesitate to call our office.


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