Among both adults and children, more than five million teeth are knocked out every year. Thankfully, if you find yourself in this unfortunate predicament, it doesn’t necessarily mean your tooth is gone for good. However, you need to treat the loss of your tooth as a dental emergency and take appropriate actions to increase the probability of having your tooth replanted and functioning for years to come. Following the steps below can help you save your tooth:
Find your tooth
For example, your tooth may have been knocked out while playing a sport. Once you realize this has happened, make an effort to find it as soon as possible. Once found, you must pick up the tooth by the crown. The crown is the top part of the tooth that is usually visible when in your mouth. If the tooth is picked up by the root (the opposite end), it is possible to cause damage to the tooth and this decreases the probability of saving the tooth.
Rinse your tooth
If you find that your tooth has any dirt or debris on it, wash it off using water or by licking it. It may be tempting to wash it off using chemicals or soap, but this should be avoided. You should also avoid wrapping the tooth in any sort of material.
Try to reposition the tooth back into the socket if possible
This should be attempted immediately. This can be done by gently pushing the tooth into the socket while handling the crown. Alternatively, you can place the tooth directly above the socket and then slowly close your mouth. Afterward, maintain the position of your tooth either by using your fingers or by biting down gently on the tooth.
See a dentist or endodontist as soon as possible
Ideally, it is best to see a dental professional within 30 minutes of the injury. This is not always possible, however, it may still be possible to save your tooth. Try calling ahead to your dental office to let them know of your emergent situation to get an expedited consultation.
Of course, prevention is always the best course of action. Protect your teeth while engaging in sports by using the appropriate protective equipment. Depending on the sport, this may mean using a mouth guard or helmet. The use of safety gear can greatly decrease the likelihood of your teeth falling out.
While driving, make sure to always use your seatbelt. This can prevent your face from impacting the steering wheel or front seats in the case of an accident. Using your seatbelts could also save your life.
To maintain overall strong and healthy teeth, have a good routine of cleaning and oral care. The recommendation is to brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes at a times, as well as floss at least once a day. Of course, the importance of regular dental check-ups can also not be stressed enough.
In the unfortunate case that your tooth does get knocked out, the dental team here as Benicia Oral Surgery is ready to help you save your tooth!