My Child Chipped Their Tooth – Now What?

Chipping a tooth is much more common than we think. It can happen when your child is eating a hard, crunchy snack. Maybe your kid loves to play rough. Either way, accidents happen!

If you haven’t experienced a chipped tooth before, it is understandable to be worried. Here’s what you should do if your child has a fragmented tooth.

Initial Reaction

When the incident occurs, a common reaction is to attempt to calm your child. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), the first thing to do is rinse their mouth with warm water and place a cold compress to help prevent swelling.

Every child reacts differently: some are usually in pain while others are not depending on how severely the tooth is chipped. Do not panic!

Next, call your dentist and explain what happened. Giving detailed information will help the dentist assess the situation and treat the area.

Our office would like to know if the child is in pain, when the event took place, which tooth, and if there is any bleeding from within the tooth. If possible, we suggest bringing the tooth fragment with you to the appointment.

It is important to note the difference between an exposed nerve and a sensitive tooth. If the nerve is exposed, treatment should be expedited (within 24 hours) and we may need to seal the tooth until it can be restored.


Treatment options will vary depending on the severity of the fracture. There are a few ways to restore a chipped tooth. In some cases, the dentist can fill and polish the tooth with restorative material or bond the area if the chip is on one of the front teeth.

When bonding, we use an adhesive and a resin material that’s the same color as the tooth. Our office also provides options to use Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas) if your child happens to be anxious.

Keep in mind if your child uses laughing gas, there is no eating or drinking two hours before the appointment. If the fracture is more severe, your dentist will walk you through the possibility of needing a crown.

Patient Care

Our Pediatric Dentists are trained professionals and are well prepared to handle cases like this. We will always make sure parents and patients are aware of treatment plans; our goal is to keep everyone calm in a seemingly alarming situation.

If your child has chipped their tooth, Sutton Children’s Dentistry & Orthodontics will work with your child and ensure a healthy and beautiful smile.
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