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Dealing with a Knocked out Tooth

Closeup of the opened mouth of a child with a tooth space

No one wants to think about dental emergencies, but being prepared is half of the battle. Understanding how to handle the situation and how much time you have is the only way to ensure that your situation has a positive outcome, which means trying to save the natural tooth.

Stay Calm

The key to the entire situation is to stay calm. This is not an easy task, as a knocked out tooth can be very gruesome, especially since there is a large amount of blood that typically accompanies the accident. Before you panic, gather your thoughts and make sure you are ready to tackle the situation. You will need to act fast, which is why you need your wits about you. If you cannot handle large amounts of blood, try to solicit help from someone that can remain calm for you.

Stop the Bleeding and Find the Tooth

If the hardest things to do is deal with the bleeding that occurs when a tooth is knocked out. Grab sterile cloths or gauze and apply light pressure to the area. This will help the bleeding subside, allowing everyone to react appropriately. Once the victim is stabilized, it is time to look for the tooth. This can be disconcerting as well because time is of the essence. Once you find the tooth, make sure to pick it up by the crown, not the roots, and place it in a sterile jar with either saliva or milk. If your child is old enough or it is an adult, have them place the tooth in their cheek. The key is to keep it moist – if it dries out, it will not be able to be put back in place.

Call the Office

Once you have the tooth and the person that experienced the knocked out tooth can remain stable for a few minutes, call our office. Time is of the essence with a knocked out tooth. In most cases, it needs to be put back in place in about 1 hour. If this is not possible, other options for tooth replacement will have to be explored. Typically the emergency room at the hospital will be unable to assist you with this situation; all they can do is to help minimize the pain. This is why it is essential to call us as soon as you can so that we can direct you to the next steps to saving the knocked out tooth.

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