When you’re planning student trips and getaways, the priority is finding educational and fun activities that all the students will enjoy. Safety is also an important consideration when booking any excursions or trips, but even if you take precautions, there are always risks. Students may be sick, get injured, or have emergencies on school trips, so it’s essential to prepare just in case.

Dental problems or emergencies can be even more complicated to deal with when on a school trip. It’s sometimes uncertain whether the student requires immediate dental care or can hold out until you return. Here are some guidelines and tips on how to handle a dental emergency when one occurs.

What to do if a student has a dental emergency

Ideally, prevention is the best way to avoid a dental emergency. Students should have regular dental checkups to identify any possible issues before they worsen. As the teacher or trip coordinator, you don’t have control over the care before the trip, but you will have to act adequately when a problem arises.

For most situations, which you’ll find below, you’ll want to get the student to the dentist straight away. If your trip is over the weekend, you’ll need to find a dentist open on Saturdays in Houston, Tx that can accommodate you.

To know how to handle each unique case, here are some of the most common dental emergencies you may encounter on school trips.

1. Toothache

A toothache can dictate a variety of problems, from minor to severe. It could be a piece of sharp food, such as a potato chip, lodged between the teeth. Alternatively, it could be an infection, such as an abscess. Identify the cause of the problem by having the student rinse their mouth with warm water and see if it is just tooth sensitivity or something more severe. You can give them pain relievers to deal with the pain until they get home and book an appointment with a dentist.

2. Broken or chipped teeth

If a student chips or breaks their teeth, immediately use a cold compress to help with any swelling and get them straight to a dentist. If a nerve is exposed, it could be excruciating, so it’s essential to see a professional. There is the potential to reattach the broken piece, so if you can find it, then put it in a bag for the student to take with them.

3. Knocked out tooth

If the entire tooth is knocked out and is one of their adult teeth, hold on to the tooth as the dentist can likely re-implant it. The tooth must be preserved appropriately until they can get to the dentist for the best chance to save it. The root will need to be fully intact, so if the root snapped or was broken, then it might be too late. Regardless, rinse the tooth off gently and keep it in milk until the student gets to the dentist and make sure they go straight away.