WHAT IS AN AVULSED TOOTH?
Accidents, hits, and falls can sometimes cause complete tooth avulsion. The impact causes the tooth to be knocked out of the root and fall out. It’s vital to take the right steps immediately after the accident to avoid damage to your tooth and gums. The good news is that your dentist may be able to reinsert the tooth if you act quickly. Contact the dentist immediately. If your tooth has been knocked out, just call your dentist’s emergency line and explain the problem to them. They will recommend the most appropriate steps to preserve the tooth. In order to avoid more damage, they will also explain what you shouldn’t do.
IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE ACCIDENT
Tooth avulsion can cause panic and people often fail to react quickly enough to save the tooth. If you keep calm and know what to do, the tooth may be able to be replanted and Here’s what you need to do immediately after the accident:
You can replant the tooth within the first five minutes. While this is unpleasant and will cause a considerable amount of discomfort, it can easily save you the pain and trouble of complex cosmetic procedures down the line. Replanting is easy and should be quick.
Hold the tooth by the crown and do not touch the root.
Wash the tooth with cold water if it’s dirty. Be sure not to scrub or rub the root; just pour cold water over it to clean.
Grasp the crown of the tooth firmly between your thumb and your forefinger with the smooth side facing outward.
Stabilize your head, place the tooth in the cusp and firmly push forward. This can be a little painful or cause discomfort but you should push through it.
Maintain the pressure to remove all the blood accumulated in the socket. If needed, hold the in place while you travel to the dentist.
CONTROL THE BLEEDING
After you’ve reinserted the tooth, use tissues to control the bleeding. The bleeding should slow down after around 10 minutes. Try not to rattle the reinserted tooth too much as that can cause damage to the socket and root.
AFTER 5 MINUTES
If the tooth is not reinserted in the first five minutes, it will need to be preserved as you head to the dentist’s office. An avulsed tooth is still active and alive after it’s separated from the root but it can dry out quickly. Store your tooth in milk. Cold milk is known to preserve ligament cells in teeth for up to three hours. It has a similar pH level and osmolarityas as the tooth so it won’t damage the tooth during transport. Both water and saliva are less acceptable alternatives and will accelerate decay of the tooth. Even with milk, there’s a chance that your tooth will become a graft and won’t be recognized as a part of your body. However, milk will minimize the risk.
Even replanted teeth are considered a dental emergency as the dentist will need to correct the alignment, clean the general area, and minimize the chances of infection. They will carefully examine the extent of the damage and make sure your tooth is securely anchored to the socket before they send you home. While tooth avulsion is alarming and can cause the patient to panic, it’s important to maintain a level head and react quickly to the situation. If you take the steps mentioned above, you can save your tooth and preserve the beauty of your smile.