What Should I Do After I Knock Out a Tooth?

March 21, 2024

Filed under: Uncategorized — costellodental @ 8:21 pm
Man has oral pain

Everybody wants a knockout smile, but nobody wants to knock out a tooth. There are more than five million teeth lost every year in America, but there are steps you can take to save a dislodged tooth so it can be reimplanted in your gum. Here’s a brief guide to what to do when if your tooth is ejected from your mouth so that you can get it to the emergency dentist’s office as quickly as possible.

Getting Help Sooner Is Better

Once a tooth becomes separated from the gum, its chances of being successfully reimplanted begin to fall shortly afterward. However, there are products at pharmacies that can keep a tooth in savable condition for up to twenty-four hours, so you might want to stock up if you or your family enjoys sports. The first thing to do is to secure the tooth, and ideally, you’ll get the tooth to your dentist’s office within an hour.

How to Handle a Dislodged Tooth

When handling the tooth, keep in mind the following instructions:

  • Pick the tooth up by the crown, never the root. The root of the tooth is full of sensitive tissues that must be preserved for successful reimplantation.
  • If the tooth is dirty, swish it around in a bowl with lukewarm water and no cleaning agents. Scrubbing or exposure to harsh soap or hot or cold temperatures could injure the root.
  • Replace the tooth in its socket, if possible. Otherwise, carry it in your cheek, in your lip, or in a container with some saliva or milk. The tooth must be kept moist at all times, but don’t use regular tap water, as the injured root cells won’t be able to tolerate it for long.
  • Call your emergency dentist to explain the situation and let them know that you’re coming. If you can’t reach your dentist, head for an emergency room, as they will be able to provide you with pain medication and treatments that can keep your tooth savable until your dentist’s office opens in the morning.

While knocking out a tooth is certainly a stressful situation, it can be remedied if you know what to do when it happens. By thinking and acting quickly and with a little preparation, you can save a dislodged tooth from being lost for good.

About the Author

Dr. Ernie Costello earned his dental degree from the West Virginia University School of Dentistry, where he was a member of the Omicron Kappa Upsilon Dental Honor Society and the Delta Sigma Delta Dental Fraternity. He has completed additional training in root canal treatments and is an Invisalign Preferred Provider. His office in Arlington Heights, IL offers general, restorative, cosmetic, and emergency dentistry. If you have dislodged a tooth, dial (847) 259-1111. For non-emergency inquiries, contact the office online.

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