Knocked-out teeth are considered a dental emergency. Today, our Comox dentists share what you should do if one of your teeth gets knocked out.
How do Teeth Get Knocked Out?
In many cases, teeth get knocked out after a person takes a hit to the face or jaw.
If one or more of your teeth gets knocked out follow these steps:
1. Locate the tooth and pick it up by the crown (do not touch the root).
Immediately after you lose your tooth, do your best to find it. Pick the tooth up carefully by the crown (the part exposed above the gum line when it is in your mouth).
2. Rinse the tooth with water very gently if it’s dirty.
Only use water to rinse any dirt or debris off of the tooth. Avoid using soap or chemicals. Don't dry or scrub the tooth, or wrap it in cloth or tissue, as any of these actions could cause damage.
3. If you can, put the tooth back into its socket.
Try putting the tooth back in its socket right away. You can try to gently push it in (continuing to touch the crown only, not the root). Another option is to try positioning it above the socket.
Close your mouth slowly to push it in. Using a finger, hold the tooth in place. You might also bite down on it.
4. Keep the tooth moist.
If you can't get the tooth back in its socket, you need to keep it moist until you get to the dentist. Put it in a cup of milk, or keep it in your mouth next to your cheek. Avoid storing it in regular tap water, as the root surface cells will not be able to tolerate water for an extended period of time.
Using this method to preserve your tooth could increase the chances of your dentist being able to replace it.
5. Get to your dentist’s office within 30 minutes of the injury.
Ideally, you should go to your dentist’s office within 30 minutes of losing any teeth. However, it may still be possible for your dentist to save a tooth if it has been outside the mouth for an hour or more.
Ways To Prepare For a Dental Emergency at Home
You can encounter a dental emergency at any time of day or night, thankfully there are several measures you can take at home to prepare for one.
Keep these things around the house at all times, as they are handy to have in a dental emergency:
- The phone number of our Comox dentist’s office
- Small container with a lid to preserve a knocked-out tooth
- Ice pack
- Over-the-counter painkiller (such as ibuprofen)
Type "dentist near me" into your favourite search engine, and our information will likely come up. As soon as you feel safe and are able to call our office, do so. We will make room in our schedule to see you as soon as possible.