Take These Steps Immediately When Your Tooth's Been Knocked Out

Enduring a trauma that knocks out one or more teeth is likely a disturbing and disruptive moment. You’re probably in pain and perhaps even shock from the event. Certainly, your response may be dulled by the impact of the moment. 

About 5 million teeth are knocked out every year. With quick action, a knocked out tooth that’s otherwise undamaged has a very good chance of successful reimplantation. One of the keys is care from an experienced emergency dentist, like the team at Lakeside Family Dental in Shrewsbury, Maine. The practice offers extended hours in the case of dental emergencies, so follow the steps below and contact the office as soon as possible for the best chance at a successful recovery. 

Recover the tooth

Handle the tooth only by the crown, the normally visible portion that you use for eating. Any contact with the root can cause damage, making it difficult to secure the tooth back in its socket. Don’t remove any tissue attached to the tooth, since this might be important for your dentist. 

Gentle cleaning

Any dirt on your tooth should be rinsed away gently with water. Don’t hold the tooth over a sink without taking steps to prevent it from falling in the drain if dropped. Don’t scrub the tooth or use any sort of soap or cleaner, simply rinse away visible dirt. Leave it damp. There’s no need to dry it off. 

If possible, replace the tooth

The socket from which the tooth escaped is the best environment for it until a dentist can evaluate you. If it’s possible, slide the tooth back in place, as long as it goes in easily. Biting down on gauze can hold the tooth in place until you get to Lakeside Family Dental for treatment. 

Keep the tooth moist

If you can’t put the tooth back in its socket, keep it moist until you get to the dental office. You can hold the tooth between your gum and cheek, but stay focused so you don’t swallow the tooth accidentally.

Alternatively, you can place the tooth in a cup of milk, assuming you have some in your refrigerator. If you don’t have milk, you can also keep the tooth in a sealed container, covered by milk or your own saliva. There are over-the-counter kits available to save your teeth. Use these as directed. Don’t use plain tap water, as the root tissue of the tooth will suffer over time. 

Call the office

Once you’ve recovered and stabilized the tooth, contact Lakeside Family Dental at 508-203-4145 to make arrangements for emergency care. A dentist will assess the condition of your mouth and tooth to establish if reintegration is the best course of action. If not, the office can help you with dental implants, crowns and bridges, or partial dentures to fill the gap in your smile. 

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