A toothache is a common problem among children, so the first thing a parent should do is to stay calm and take the child to a general or a pediatric dentist. If the general dentist finds that the problem is serious and beyond his realm of expertise, he will refer the child to a pediatric dentist.
Toothaches may also occur in the middle of a night or in a place where a dentist may not be accessible quickly. In such a situation, the first reassurance for the parent is to know that toothaches can be temporary, and it may occur due to a sensitive tooth. If the pain persists until the morning, it is advisable to take the child to a dentist promptly. In most cases, it may turn out to be a minor cavity which may require a small filling.
Until the time a dentist can be reached, the parent should guide the child to floss on both sides of the painful tooth. If there is any food particle or another substance wedged between the teeth that is causing sensitivity or pain, it may get removed with flossing. Children typically love candies and sweets, which could be the cause of pain if it is stuck between the teeth.
Other common causes of toothache may be a cavity, a cracked tooth or a sore gum. Therefore, if the pain is persistent, it is best to visit a dentist and determine the exact cause of the problem. Thereafter, an appropriate treatment can follow.
Some dentists also recommend rinsing the mouth with warm salt water if there is a delay in reaching the dentist. The child should be guided not to swallow the water, but to just rinse and spit it out. A diluted hydrogen peroxide solution may not be recommended for small children, and it is better to stick to warm salt water for temporary relief.