21 answers

Chipped Baby Teeth

My sweet baby girl (15 months) fell today and chipped both her front teeth. They look terrible. What do they do to fix them on baby teeth? Cost or Does insurance cover this? One tooth is a bit wiggly. She has an appointment in the morning. Just wondering what to expect. She will hate every minute of it as she is going through stranger anxiety right now. She may lose her mind when they want to look and touch in her sore mouth. We are going to a pediatric dentist so I'm sure they have been through this a lot. My anxiety over this is killing me. I'd appreciate any advise or sharing of an experience. Thanks!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks for all your input. The dentist took xrays and the roots of the teeth are not cracked, so we will hope for the best. He said baby teeth can still die months after an accident like this, so to watch for any changes in color of the teeth. As for the chips he wouldn't recommend doing anything right now. Messing with them adds insult to injury and we don't want to cause any more trauma to the teeth. In 2 weeks he said he will re-evaluate and then at that time, if all looks good, file them down or put on composite. He suggested just filing them even though they still won't look the best. He said that the composite is easily chipped again by toddlers that put everything in their mouths. In his experience he said that one year olds that have the composite done are back to have it repaired 3 to 4 times before they lose their baby teeth around 6 years of age. So could get expensive and be a big trauma to hold her down to have it done. I don't think I'm up for that. I guess I have at least 2 weeks to think about it. It is just so shocking to see her smile with these jagged teeth. I guess we will get used to it. It will add character - Right!

Featured Answers

My daughter fell this past winter on the front steps and chipped her front teeth too. After 6 weeks one tooth discolored and they pulled it out. It was dramatic, but as soon as we got home that day she was so happy and back to her old self. She has had no problems whatsoever with it. I took her to Camp Smile in Plymouth in the west health building. They were awesome. Don't worry at all. It is very common.She'll be just fine:)

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My daughter had both front teeth loose and discolored from a fall around 3 years old one so bad they had to pull it out 6months later the other one was gray and loose for another at least 3 years but now shes 8 and both teeth are growing in and are white and look great. So as long as the permanate teeth come in good a few younger years of maybe not so pretty teeth are not to bad! Also do not worry about speech because it does not effect there speech in any way ! Also if shes the first kid to loose her teeth in school it is considered TOTally cool to them !!!!! Try not to worry!!!

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For future reference remember this accident because 20,30,40 years from now she may experience forshortening of the roots in the adult teeth that are hiding below the gums of the teeth that were damaged. Even though they don't show yet they are under the gums waiting and a blow to the mouth can cause future problems that may not show up until years after the accident is forgotten. I know this only because I worked for several years as a dental assistant.

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I have been though a similar situation. I can share with you that we have a dentist who works well with children. You daughter should do well with her first dentist appoint. They often let her pick a toy after her visit so she has an enjoyable visit. Most insurances do cover this visit so be sure to bring your insurance card. C.

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Hey, mama. Also watch for any blisters or pimples along the gumline of those injured teeth. Just pull up the lip every now and then when you're brushing and peek. That's how you'll know the teeth are in trouble if they don't discolor.
K.

2 moms found this helpful

Hello, My youngest fell off our bed when she was 15 months old. She caught herself with just one front tooth. I thought that she had just cut her gums but it turned out that she had part of one root holding her tooth in. The dentist wanted to pull it out but I was against it. They told me "it was not if it falls out, but when it falls out." I am glad to say that my daughter is about to turn 5 and has no proof of an injury but the x-rays. Here is what I did...go to a herb shop or online. Purchase "white oak bark" by Nature's Sunshine. It comes in a capsule. Open 1 capsule into about 1/4 cup of hot water (like making a tea) Soak cotton balls in the mixture and place in the mouth at the gum line. Keep it in the as long a possible. Due to the age, I would wait until My daughter fell asleep and I would hold her in my arms. I had to make sure that she would not choke and I wanted to resoak the cottonballs every 10 minutes or so. I did this for about an hour at a time, everyday for about 3 weeks. You can't overdo it. When we went back to the dentist at 6 weeks, they were confused. They took the x-rays twice. NO INJURY! The dental assist chased me out in to the parking lot with a notebook asking what I had done. The bottle costs about $20, I think. I bought mine at an herb shop in Snellville. And it doesn't taste bad. Kind-of woodsy, like mild cinnamon. It also works on adults. My mom used it when she was told that she needed gum surgury. 3 years later, no surgury. I would like to take the credit for all this info but my dad is a lisenced Herbalist. I always call him when the doctors say that they can't do anything to help. Hope this helps you! D.

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My son broke out 5 baby teeth last summer with a toothbrush. The chips did eventually smooth down on their own and are hardly noticeable--a year later now--one tooth has finally grayed. Versus my fear--the dentist is doing an x-ray next month and says he prefers not to pull the teeth and put in spacers--it is nature's root canal. So we will see. Best of luck

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My daughter chipped one of her front teeth. Because it was chipped like a half moon, they placed a cap over her tooth. They gave her a little laughing gas and she was fine, but she was 2-1/2 years old at the time. Her other tooth was wiggly, but it is not as wiggly now. However, the tooth without the cap is very sensitive. Our insurance did not pay for any of it until the dentist took an x-ray on our second visit. Then, all we owed was our deductible. We had to return because of the second tooth was still hurting. You may want to check into the x-ray as I was told by their front desk person that some insurance companies will not pay without it.

2 moms found this helpful

My daughter fell this past winter on the front steps and chipped her front teeth too. After 6 weeks one tooth discolored and they pulled it out. It was dramatic, but as soon as we got home that day she was so happy and back to her old self. She has had no problems whatsoever with it. I took her to Camp Smile in Plymouth in the west health building. They were awesome. Don't worry at all. It is very common.She'll be just fine:)

2 moms found this helpful

I know how you feel about the teeth. My fourth son fell and busted out three front teeth when he was three. I was so upset but the dentist told me that the baby teeth weren't affectged and to just wait for adult teeth to come in. My boy knocked one tooth out, broke one tooth in half and loose, and one tooth pushed back up in his head so far you could barely see the tip. It looked bad for the longest time because the gums were bruised. Now he is 5 and we are still waiting on those teeth but it doesn't look as bad as it used to. I had one of my boys knock his front two teeth straight back. He pushed them back into place on the drive to the ER and they ended up being ok. I think there is a reason god gives us "practice" teeth as children.

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My husband is a general dentist. You are wise to take her to a pediodontist. They have tons of experience with little ones. Let your doctor do his/her thing. Most important, be confident & positive with your child so that she will not be scared or apprehensive. Check with the front desk person about insurance coverage. They are the ones that handle that, not the docs.

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If your daughter must have the teeth pulled as my son (2 years old) did--it was very traumatic for both of us, I'd like to give you some advice.

The dentist I had then didn't use any pain killer. He did say that sometimes he sent little one to specialists that put children under, but not this time. I should have done that. Baby teeth are anchored in there pretty tightly and don't just come out. It took six adults to hold him down, including myself.

Also he said I didn't need to have a false tooth spacer. Wrong again!

Later, his new dentist put one in.

1 mom found this helpful

Hello K.. I am a pediatric dentist and a mom. This is probably sound advice. If the radiographs looked good, you are good for now, just get regular check ups and watch for any discoloration. You can always have them filed or smoothed when she is older if it is rough to her tongue. Keep your fingers crossed. Basically we watch for tooth response for something like this when trauma has occurred.

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Don't worry about the wiggling, my daughter hit her teeth when she was 3 and the two front teeth were pushed up into her gum, the dentist said they would drop back down (I had my doubts). They did eventually and they weren't loose. I have also heard that they can replace a tooth that has been knocked out if its replaced within a certain amount of time. Remember at least these aren't permanent.

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My dd -now 11 - chipped a tooth when she was about the same age at your dd. The ped dentist we went to filed the sharp edges down and talket o me about watching for abcessing...She didn't recommend capping as she said typically the kids just fall and chip the cap and that it gets very expensive to keep replacing them.

We didn't have any dental insurance at the time so I won't be any help there.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi K.,

My daughter chipped her front tooth when she was around 18 months old at a playground. It was very painful and she hated her visit at the dentist since they had to touch the tooth, etc. Me and two other assistants had to hold her down. The good thing is that she is 4 now and doesn't mind one bit going to the dentist and has completely forgotten that first experience. The pediatric dentist put some sort of epoxy on the tooth to 'build' it out to look like a normal tooth. You couldn't even tell she chipped her tooth. It helped her because it protected the raw edge so it wasn't so sensitive. It has since fallen out, but at a time when her tooth grew and didn't need the extra expoxy. She's had 3 accidents since where she's bumped her front teeth and have become displaced and loose, but so far they've stabilized and haven't discoloured.

You just never know, but it sounds like your daughter's teeth will be fine. It's just amazing how kids' teeth can survive accidents like this!

Good luck!

S.

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter had both front teeth loose and discolored from a fall around 3 years old one so bad they had to pull it out 6months later the other one was gray and loose for another at least 3 years but now shes 8 and both teeth are growing in and are white and look great. So as long as the permanate teeth come in good a few younger years of maybe not so pretty teeth are not to bad! Also do not worry about speech because it does not effect there speech in any way ! Also if shes the first kid to loose her teeth in school it is considered TOTally cool to them !!!!! Try not to worry!!!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi there!
I totally understand about you being nervous and all that stuff! Being a Mom sure is hard, huh?! My daughter at 3-1/2 was running up some concrete stairs while we were on vacation in a different state and her 2 front teeth went up into her gums (and she got 10 stitches in her mouth and tongue (split in half). Horrible. Well her teeth did "drop" and they were fine. But she did lose her 1st front tooth and then her 2nd one soon after when she was 5, but no biggie - they fall out between 4 and 8 I hear. They are her baby teeth, so thank goodness - my daughters pediatric dentist took xrays and then again a couple weeks later and said she should be completely fine. Here's hoping and praying! I always say a good prayer could help! Best of luck to you and your sweet baby girl.

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HI K., I'm going to tell you not to worry yourself sick about this over the next couple weeks, but its alot easier said than done. Remember, this is alot harder on you than it is on her, in the long run, she won't remember any of this, its just as a parent this is hard. The next appointment they will take another quick look and feel, possibly another xray. If the teeth are just rough, they will smooth them off really quick, so they won't be sharp. If the break is larger than that, they will add some composite(white Filling material) that is the color of the tooth. Remember, nothing is as strong as God made them, so they may chip, but to touch them off, is no big deal, and its easier the older she gets. I'm guessing the break didnt' go into the nerve if they didn't do anything at the first appointment, if they did, they would have to do a pulp treatment(kind of like a root canal)and then crown the tooth. As far as having to have the tooth extracted, if the tooth dies, its whats best for the tooth. Even if the tooth gets dark over the next couple years, doesn't mean its dying either by the way, so don't let that freak you out. It may not look as pretty, but may still be ok. I'm an assistant for a pediatric dentist and we do see this alot, not daily, but more than accident a week. And trust me, it is alot harder on parents than it is the child. However keep in mind, NO 15 month old wants anyone to look in their mouth, so they may yell while we look, but as soon as they sit back up, they are fine. We aren't there to hurt anyone, we're there to help. The dentist isn't the bad guy, like they are feared by so many. Thats one of the nice things to me, being an assistant, working for a pediatric dentist, I like to calm the child so they don't have a lifelong fear of a dentist like so many people have. Good luck, and if you have any questions I can help with to get you through this, please feel free to ask:)Sue

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my daughter fell with her pacifier in her mouth at 18 months. her mouth bled a little but i didnt think it was bad at all. took herto the dentist and they said "yeah, its loose". i was in tears, my poor little baby. it has a small chip as well. they did xrays, and thank goodness, it didnt push into the above teeth. we had to watch it and not allow anything like apples. they said it was very important not to ever fall on that tooth again, as it will always be weaker to injuries. i was told there will always be a chance of it dying but looked good. now at 3 1/2, they always check it, but we have had no problems. the chip is small so we never had it done. i would just recommend, at least at such a young age, to do very minimal work to fix it. being so young, it will be tramatic obn both of you, and after awhile, you dont even notice.

good luck, im sure she will heal well. its rougher on us thaN them when these things happen.

1 mom found this helpful

We had a tooth chipping accident in our house, too. When my oldest daughter was four, she was carrying her little sister (forward facing) and tripped, resulting in the younger one's top front teeth chipping on the bottom. I called my dad (an orthodontist - whew!), and since the teeth weren't loose or bleeding profusely we waited to go the pediatric dentist in the morning. He smoothed them out because they were cutting her lip a bit, then rechecked them several times in the following months to make sure they weren't damaged beyond the chips. I felt so sad for her, having a crooked grin, but as other people have said - it didn't bother her at all. One year later, though (when she was three), we went in for a regular check-up and he showed me that there was an abcess (sp???) in her gums above the teeth (it looked like a canker sore, if you've ever seen one - a good sized white spot on the gums). I felt bad that I hadn't noticed it; you had to lift her lip up to see it. Anyway, it meant the roots were infected and the teeth had to come out. We went to a specialist to have them removed (I didn't tell her what was going to happen until we were in the car on the way; I worried enough for the both of us!). They gave her gas to put her to sleep, and it was over in just a few minutes. She wasn't upset at all, amazingly! We waited a few weeks for the gums to heal, then her dentist put in a "spacer" (her "pretend teeth") which will stay in until her bottom teeth become loose. I thought I'd share our story so you know to keep checking her mouth, even after you might expect you're "out of the woods." I was really surprised by the infection so long after the accident!

It sounds like you got lots of good advice. I don't have much to add, other than moral support. My now 12 year old son fell on a push toy at 12 months, and the sitter thought he knocked the tooth out and swallowed it! There was blood everywhere, and when I got there, they were both crying. I took him to my dentist, who referred us to a pediatric dentist that took us in right away. He actually knocked the tooth back up into his gums. He kicked and squirmed and screamed, and I had to hold him on my lap as they did the x-rays, etc. It was awful, so I really feel your pain. We got through it. The tooth dropped back down on it's own, and it never "died" like they said it might. It fell out as a baby tooth, and the permenant one came in a bit crooked, but that's the "character" park of it. I chipped my teeth at 7 on a skateboard, just in the middle of my two front teeth. I got caps at 12 years old, but that made it so I didn't have to have braces, as I had really "buck" front teeth.
Sorry to ramble, but I just wanted to tell you I'm thinking of you, and I hope it gets better for you. I know this is long after the fact, so hope you're already in a better spot.
Sincerely,
B.

I hope your appointment went better than ours. The same thing happened to my now 26 month old about 6 months ago, and even though my sister, her beloved aunt, is a dentist, she wouldn't let anyone anywhere near it. She chipped only one tooth, and it really is a cosmetic thing, so it's your choice whether to fix it or not. I hated to see her little chipped tooth but it looks like I will have to live with it for a little while longer. I will try in a few months again and hopefully it will work!

Good luck. I know how heartbreaking it is. I cried and cried!

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