Losing a baby tooth is a right of passage. But, when it happens to a permanent or "adult" tooth, it's a dental emergency.
Teeth are strong structures anchored securely in the jaw. But, even in spite of this, approximately five million teeth get knocked out each year. And, believe it or not, children and adults have a nearly equal risk of this problem because of the various causes, like sports accidents and falling off bikes to being involved in car accidents.
Fortunately, with four convenient Maryland locations, the experienced dentists at Supertooth can help save your tooth. However, it’s only possible if you preserve it properly and get to their office quickly enough.
If you knock a tooth out, take these steps to give yourself the best chances of saving it.
We understand that any incident that can knock out a tooth is bound to be shocking. That said, it’s essential to do your best to stay calm.
If you can find and properly preserve your tooth, our dentists can potentially repair it and reimplant it in your jaw. Call our office immediately, let us know what happened, and that you’re on your way. We can offer additional instructions and provide emergency dental services to treat situations like broken or knocked-out teeth.
However, for the best results, you have to act fast if you want to save your tooth, so you don’t want to lose any time panicking. Just remember, if you stay calm and handle the tooth correctly, you have approximately 60 minutes of viability.
To start, find the knocked-out or broken piece of tooth. Once located, only touch it by the crown — that’s the visible portion of the tooth you can see when it’s in your mouth. Handling the root can damage the tooth, reducing your chances of saving it.
After finding the tooth, rinse it with bottled water or milk, but don’t scrape, scrub, or use alcohol on it.
Finally, it’s crucial to keep the tooth moist. If possible, gently place the tooth back into its socket after rinsing your mouth out. You can also tuck it in your cheek or place it in a small, sealed container of milk or a special tooth preservation kit like “Save-A-Tooth.” Never put a knocked-out tooth in tap water — exposing it to these chemicals can damage it.
Once you clean and safely store your tooth, make your way to our office.
As we mentioned, it’s vital to see one of our dentists as soon as possible after knocking a tooth out. The faster we can assess the situation and take action, the better the chances are of saving your tooth.
After we replant or repair your tooth, you should schedule a follow-up visit. This allows us to check that your tooth has reattached to your jaw and assess whether you require any additional care. For example, a knocked-out tooth is susceptible to internal decay, so some patients need root canals after reimplantation.
And, rest easy. If we can’t save your tooth, you won’t have to live with a gap in your smile. In addition to emergency dental care, we also offer a variety of solutions to replace missing teeth, including bridges and dental implants.
Don’t wait to get care if you knock out a tooth or have another dental emergency. Call the Supertooth office nearest to you or book an appointment online today.