No matter how well you take care of your teeth, accidents can always happen. Any solid impact has the potential to send a tooth flying out of your mouth and if you don’t know how to react, you could end up losing it forever. So what should you do if your tooth gets knocked out? Here are some tips from the friendly staff at ZDental with locations in the Philadelphia area and New Jersey.
When your tooth gets knocked out, you have about 30 minutes to save it, so time is of the essence. If you memorize the following steps, you can be sure you’ll react in the appropriate way so you can get to your dentist ASAP and give your tooth the best chance of a successful reinsertion.
- Locate the Tooth
Depending on where you are when your tooth gets knocked out, this could be the most difficult step. Don’t panic; search in a systematic manner and don’t be afraid to enlist the help of anyone standing nearby.
- Pick the Tooth up by the Crown
When you find your missing tooth, be sure to never touch the root when handling it. This could damage the root and lessen your chance of a successful tooth reinsertion. If your tooth is dirty, you should clean it off with milk or water (do not use soap or any other chemicals). Handle the tooth gently, NEVER scrub it, and do NOT wrap it in a paper towel, tissue, or cloth.
- Put the Tooth Back in if You Can
If possible, your tooth’s socket is the best place to store it until you can get help. Try to orient it correctly, then gently push it back in, taking care to never touch the root. Don’t force it, and if it slides back in easily, you can hold it in place by gently biting down while you find a nearby dentist.
- What to do if You Can’t Reinsert the Tooth
If you can’t manage to get the tooth back in its socket, your next priority should be keeping it moist. You can actually store the tooth in your mouth, between your cheek and gums or, failing that, in a glass of milk. Do not store it in tap water, as this can kill your root cells.
- Find a Dentist Immediately
Once your tooth is in stable condition, your next priority is to find a dentist that provides emergency dental care ASAP. At ZDental, urgent dental care is one of our top priorities, so look up one of our 5 locations if you’re in Philadelphia or New Jersey. While it’s best to deal with your missing tooth within 30 minutes, it may be possible to save it even if it’s been outside your mouth for an hour or more, so there’s no need to panic.
Now that you’re an expert on saving knocked-out teeth, you’ll know exactly what to do if you or someone you know loses a tooth. It’s also a good idea to locate some emergency dental care facilities (like ZDental) in your area so you won’t have to waste time looking them up during an emergency. At ZDental, we’d love to be the dental office you turn to for emergencies and regular dental care, so please call our location nearest to you for all your dental needs!