What to Do If You Knock out Your Tooth?

Woman holding hand over mouth

A knocked-out tooth is more common than you might think. Medically known as an avulsed tooth, such a condition can happen to both children and adults. It is considered a serious dental emergency, especially if the tooth affected is permanent. The good news is, you can always get tooth replacement. However, you need to do your part to in order to save your knocked-out tooth. Although the damage can be mended, time is of the essence. Act quickly so that your tooth will be replanted and you can enjoy the results for years to come. So if a tooth injury happens to you, make sure that you seek immediate help from an expert.

What to Do

As already said earlier, you need to do your part when you’ve got knocked-out tooth. While waiting for tooth replacement, there are several first aid or initial measures you must do to save your tooth from permanent damage. Aside from the tooth itself, you also need to concern yourself with the other affected parts such as the blood vessels, the nerves and the supporting tissues. While the damaged vessels are irreparable, there is still something you can do to save your precious tooth. It’s all a matter of reattaching your tooth (bone) to the canal.

Things to Do Before Tooth Replacement

The most important thing to do is to go to the dentist as quickly as possible after the incident occurs. To improve your chances of preventing further damage and saving your tooth, follow these simple things:

  • Be gentle with the knocked-out tooth. This means that you shouldn’t touch it, especially the root, which is the one under the gum. If you are not too careful with how you handle your tooth, it can get easily damaged and you might lose your chance of having it replaced.
  • Rinse the tooth with milk. When you do this, hold the crown or the upper part of the tooth. If you don’t have milk around, water will do. Just make sure that you rinse it well. Never clean it up with a fabric, shirt or washcloth. Doing so could damage the tooth further.
  • Preserve the knocked-out tooth. You can do this by keeping it moist. Place it in a glass of milk. However, if you don’t have one, you can store the tooth in your mouth. Keep it between your gum and cheek. You can also simply put it in a cup with your saliva in it or placed it in a cup of water, if you prefer. Just keep it moist as much as possible. That’s the best way to preserve your tooth and prevent more damage.
  • In some cases, you can slip the tooth right back into its socket. Chances are, it will slip back in. However, you shouldn’t force it in as it might cause more damage. Slip it without applying too much pressure. If this is impossible to do, then just do the previous suggestion, which is to keep the tooth moist while you bide the time before you can get to the dentist.

Your shot at tooth replacement is higher if the knocked-out tooth is whole, and not in pieces. In either case, still do the above-mentioned suggestions and seek help from the dentist as soon as possible.

Get Dental Help

Dentists always know what to do with your tooth. However, for the re-implant to be successful, it should be done an hour or so after the incident (which is, after you have knocked out your tooth). Again, time is highly important to the success of the re-implant.

The procedure can be simple if the tooth is still whole. The dentist will simply put it back in place. However, if the tooth is broken or in pieces, the procedure can be a bit complicated. Normally, in cases like this, the dentist will flush the debris out of your socket before slipping the tooth back in its original place.

Tooth replacement will a lot be easier when the bone around the knocked-out tooth was not damaged or fractured. This is because it will reattach on its own firmly to the root in three to four weeks time. If there is damage, the healing period may take up to six weeks.

The dentist will check your tooth before applying the right course of action. The dentist may wait awhile or may perform root canal immediately. Several factors need to be taken into consideration, such as how long has been your tooth been out of your mouth. This is the reason why keeping it moist helps bide you time. In either case, the dentist will do splint the knocked-out tooth with a composite material and a soft wire. This is necessary to hold the tooth in place for several days or as the dentist sees fit.

Even when your tooth has been successfully re-implanted, you must still have it checked three months after and regularly from then on. This is to ensure that everything will work out just fine. If you have suffered from an avulsed tooth, you know what to do. Don’t wait any longer. Seek immediate help from a trusted dental professional to get a successful dental implant.