Having a tooth knocked out can be painful and scary. The most common reasons including being hit in a fight or being hit while playing a sport. However, there are many other reasons as well, like a heavy object dropping on you or tripping and hitting your mouth on the corner of a table. Whatever the reason, a knocked-out tooth must be dealt with very quickly. If you or your family have a tooth knocked out, here’s what you should do.
Properly Pick Up the Tooth
If you’re tooth is knocked out, find the tooth immediately and pick it up by the crown (the chewing surface). Do not pick the tooth up by the roots because you could further damage them. You will need the tooth, so don’t immediately go to the dentist without it.
Rinse the Tooth
If the tooth is dirty, gently rinse the tooth under cold water. Do not use soap or any other cleaner and do not dry the tooth off. You want to handle the tooth as little as possible, reducing the possibility of further damaging the roots or the tooth itself. Do not keep the tooth in a tissue or cloth.
Put the Tooth Back Into the Socket
If you can, gently push the tooth back into the socket, remembering to only touch the chewing surface of the tooth. The sooner the tooth is put back into the socket, the better the possibility of saving the tooth. If you cannot put the tooth back into the empty socket, hold the tooth above the socket with your fingers or by softly biting down.
Keep the Tooth Moist
If you cannot replace the tooth in or above the socket, keep it in milk or on the inside of your mouth to keep the tooth moist.
The worst thing to do is keep the tooth outside of the mouth or outside of milk because the root surface from drying out. Do not put the tooth in water because the roots cannot tolerate water for a long period of time.
Get to the Dentist Immediately
Call your dentist immediately to set up an emergency appointment. Greenspoint Dental offers emergency dental appointments, providing you with quick access to the appropriate dental care. It is possible to save a tooth that’s been outside of the mouth for over an hour, but you should get to the dentist as soon as possible for the greatest possibility of saving the tooth.
If you or your family play contact sports or are frequently in situations where your teeth have a high chance of getting knocked out, you may want to wear a mouthguard. Wearing a mouthguard reduces the potential for one of your teeth to be knocked out, and can also help prevent injuries to your lips, cheeks, and tongue.
For more information or to schedule a dental appointment, contact Greenspoint Dental in Houston, Texas. We are dedicated to providing you and your loved ones with the best dental care.