Dental Emergency Attendance at an Australia Tertiary Children’s Hospital
Objective: Dental emergencies are a significant impact on the health system. The resource needs are complex and consume services in the tertiary health sector. It is important that we examine the reasons and types of attendances to look for ways to mitigate this demand. The aim was to identify the rate of dental emergencies according to age groups, genders and Indigenous status.
Design: A retrospective analysis of dental emergencies at the Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH; tertiary children hospital in Perth) was performed.
Setting: The study included data from hard-copy files of patients admitted to the PMH.
Main outcome measures: The records of 239 children who attended the PMH in Perth with dental emergency problems during the first 3 months of 2017 were analyzed.
Findings: The major reasons for dental emergencies were infection and trauma. The most common age group was children between 3 to 6 years old. In this age group, boys attended more than girls due to dental injury. Although there were equal presentations of dental infection and dental trauma cases, dental infection cases mostly required hospitalization and treatment under general anesthetic.
Conclusion: While some dental emergencies are unavoidable, increasing awareness about dental hygiene, regular checkups and early dental treatments in children could decrease emergency visits and prevent conditions such as dental infections