No matter how careful we are with our teeth—accidents happen. A tooth that’s been knocked out, also known as avulsed tooth, can be saved and re-implanted back. However, it still depends on how the tooth is treated while it is outside the mouth. Acting quickly and wisely is the key to saving an avulsed tooth.
What You Can Do
When the tooth gets knocked out, the most important step is to remain calm — do not panic. Though the nerves and supporting tissues are damaged during tooth avulsion, a root canal procedure can bring the tooth back to its place. Rushing to the dentist as soon as possible will increase the chances of saving a tooth. It is also important to avoid damaging the tooth even more. The following are the steps that you can take to help you preserve an avulsed tooth:
- Try not to touch the root of the tooth—the end of the tooth that was attached to the gums. It may worsen the damage.
- If the tooth gets dirty, you can wash it using milk while holding it by its crown. If there’s no milk, you can rinse it with water. Remember not to dry it with a cloth or any fabric.
- Always keep the tooth moist. You can do this by filling a glass with milk, and putting the tooth inside. If there’s no milk, you can keep it in your mouth, between your cheek. However, a child may not be able to this without swallowing the tooth. For children, you may ask the child to spit an amount of saliva in a glass, where the tooth can be placed. If none of these are possible, you can place the tooth in a glass of water.
- Try to put the tooth back into its socket. There are many instances that the tooth will slip back to its place without you needing to put pressure on it. Make sure it is facing the right way, but never force it back in its socket. If the tooth can’t slip back to its location, the best thing to do is to keep it moist.
What the Oral Surgeon Can Do
If the tooth is still in a good condition, the oral surgeon might be able to put it back in its socket. The procedure can be easy or complicated depending on how damaged the tooth is. After examining the tooth and performing an X-ray to assess the condition of the tooth, the oral surgeon may attach the avulsed tooth next to healthy teeth. This would allow proper support so your tooth can deal. The oral surgeon will then decide how long the splint should remain until the tooth is fully healed. Usually, if the tooth is not damaged, it will take about six to eight weeks until it is repaired. The more damaged the area is, the longer it will take for its full restoration.
Get Optimal Oral Health!
Your teeth need proper care. If you or someone you know have an avulsed tooth, do the steps above and rush them quickly to our clinic. Achieve a more confident smile by reaching out to Hill Country Oral Surgery for your oral health needs.