Toddlers aren’t always able to describe what they are feeling. When they are in pain, they might not be able to tell their parents exactly what hurts or when it bothers them.
Toothaches can be incredibly common in toddlers, and there can be a number of causes for their discomfort. Cavities, tooth decay, trapped food, broken teeth, plaque buildup, and new erupting teeth can all be sources of tooth pain in younger children.
Even if a toddler can’t explain that they are in pain, there are certain signs that could signal a potential problem. If you want to be able to spot that your toddler has a toothache and take proper action, here’s what you need to know.
Signs Your Toddler Has a Toothache
A toddler may not have the words to tell their parents that their tooth hurts. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t learn whether that may be the case from their actions.
For example, if your toddler suddenly starts eating or drinking less, or shows signs of distress when having a meal or beverage, a toothache could be to blame. Eating puts pressure on teeth, making it uncomfortable if there is a problem with a tooth. Temperature sensitivity can also accompany a toothache, so issues with hot or cold beverages could be a sign.
If your toddler is experiencing more tiredness or fatigue, that could be a red flag indicating a dental issue. In cases where an infection is present, they may also run a fever, or there might be facial swelling. If the toothache causes an earache, your toddler might start rubbing their ears. Jaw tenderness is also a common symptom of a tooth-related concern.
What to Do If Your Toddler Has a Toothache
If you suspect your toddler has a toothache, there are things you can do. First, examine their mouth. As you look around, if you see signs of trapped food, then you can gently floss your toddler’s teeth. Pieces of food can put pressure on the teeth and gums, which can be uncomfortable. Plus, if it is stuck for long, it promotes tooth decay and plaque buildup.
To relieve their discomfort, you may want to give your toddler an anti-inflammatory. A cold compress can also provide relief when placed on your toddler’s outer cheek near the area that’s uncomfortable.
While examining their mouth, also look for swelling, gum redness, tooth damage, tooth discoloration, and loose teeth. If you see any of those signs, the issue could need treatment, so you want to schedule an appointment with your Frisco pediatric dentist right away. Additionally, you should check to see if they have a fever, as this could indicate that they have an infection that needs care from a dental professional.
If you can’t figure out why your toddler’s tooth hurts, then you should also make a dental appointment quickly. Certain issues, like hairline fractures, aren’t always visible to the naked eye. Your Frisco dentist can perform a thorough checkup to locate the source of the problem. Then, they’ll create a treatment plan that corrects the cause of the issue, ensuring your toddler is both healthy and comfortable.