When Are Toothaches a Concern with Kids?

toothachesIf your child has a toothache or complains of dental pain, it’s understandable to worry. Some kinds of dental pain are more serious than others and require immediate attention. Here, we discuss some different types of toothaches, when to see a pediatric dentist, and how to treat toothaches at home while you schedule a visit with your child’s dental office. 

Types of Toothaches

Dental pain is common in children. Some of the most common forms of dental pain come when new teeth start to erupt. If you’ve ever dealt with a fussy teething baby, you know having teeth break through the gums can be uncomfortable. The same kind of dental pain can happen to your child as their adult teeth come in. 


However, it’s important to pay attention to the type of toothache and the duration. If your child’s teeth seem stuck or not coming in, or they’ve had a sharp or throbbing toothache with no clear signs of an erupting tooth, there may be another issue. 


Sharp tooth pain can come from several factors, including cavities, cracked or chipped teeth, or an exposed dental root. If your child has experienced any form of dental trauma, whether, from sports, play, or other sources, they may have enamel damage you cannot see. 


With this kind of toothache, there’s usually some kind of acute damage to the tooth that requires intervention from a dentist. Remember, even if there is no visible damage to your child’s teeth, a toothache may indicate hidden damage that needs treatment to keep your child’s teeth healthy. 


Dull, throbbing dental pain can come from a wide range of sources. Sometimes, a dull ache can result from teeth coming in, especially with the molars. However, conversely, it can signal issues like teeth grinding or infection. If your child has a toothache presenting as a dull ache and has other signs of a dental infection, such as a fever or swelling in the mouth, it’s time to visit your pediatric dentist. 

Reducing Toothache Pain

If your child has a toothache, and you’ve scheduled an appointment with your pediatric dentist, there are some ways you can reduce discomfort in the meantime. First, using a cold pack wrapped in a towel applied to the side of the face can reduce swelling. Make sure not to place the cold pack directly against the skin, and take breaks. You can also use over-the-counter, pediatrician-approved pain medication to reduce pain. Follow all instructions and tell your pediatric dentist about any medications taken before the appointment. 


Depending on the source of the toothache, your dental team will work with you to determine the best treatment plan, which may require repairing the tooth, fighting an infection, or, in some cases, removing the tooth entirely.


If your child has a toothache, call Cohen Family Smiles at (914) 245-2965. We offer friendly, professional dental care for patients of all ages and work diligently with our patients to preserve their dental health. Make your appointment today!






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