It might make you cringe thinking about having a tooth knocked out, but your response to something like this could be the difference between salvaging the tooth and requiring significant dental work. The good news is that a tooth that has been knocked out of the socket can often be successfully replaced if you take the right action as soon as possible.
A tooth can be knocked out of the socket in many ways, typically from some sort of trauma or blow to the mouth. We see this most often with people who play contact sports. Preventing these kinds of incidents is key, which is why we recommend athletes wear mouthguards.
If you find yourself or a loved one in this situation where a tooth has been knocked out, it is important to remain calm in order to address the issue effectively. In addition to immediately scheduling an emergency appoint with your dentist, here are some questions to ask yourself and how to respond:
Is the socket bleeding?
If so, it’s important to stop the bleeding by folding up a clean cloth of some kind, holding it over the socket and biting down. Maintain this pressure by keeping jaws firmly clenched.
Where is the tooth?
It is important to locate the tooth itself. In some cases the tooth may be swallowed and if you can’t locate the tooth you’ll need an x-ray to determine if it was swallowed. If you have the tooth you can hold it by the crown and firmly press it back into the socket. Bite down on a cloth of some kind to keep the tooth in place.
What if the tooth doesn’t go back in?
If the tooth isn’t staying in when you put it back into the socket, keep the tooth in your mouth to prevent the root from drying out. Keep it there until you are able to meet with a dentist who can put the tooth back into place.
Is it a baby tooth?
If it is, it is typically recommended that baby teeth not be put back into the socket. The reason for this is to prevent and/or pinpoint an infection of the adult tooth as a result of the baby tooth being knocked out. You’ll need to schedule an appointment ASAP in order to make sure no tooth fragments are still in the gums.
These are just a few tips, but you will most definitely need to schedule an emergency visit with your dentist to make sure there was no serious damage to your mouth as a result of the tooth being knocked out. While these tips give you ways to assess the situation, you will most definitely need a professional opinion as soon as possible.
If you’ve had a tooth knocked out and weren’t able to replace it, contact us today to explore options for replacing the tooth.