What To Do If A Tooth Is Knocked Out

Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon, Pasadena, CA

If a tooth is knocked out, it should be rapidly placed back in the tooth socket if at all possible. Simply rinsing the tooth with tap water and reinserting it into the dental socket will preserve the delicate ligamental surface of the root and the prognosis for reattachment. Deciduous (baby) teeth are generally not replanted due to their poor prognosis for retention.

Keeping the tooth moist is most critical. Other alternatives include placing the tooth in the victim’s mouth between the cheek and gum, placing the tooth in dilute salt water (1/2 tsp salt in 8 -12 oz glass of water) or milk. The sooner the tooth is reinserted into the dental socket, the better for the survival of the tooth. Therefore, the patient should see a dentist or Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon as soon as possible. Never attempt to “wipe the tooth off”, since remnants of the ligament which hold the tooth in the jaw are attached and are vital to the success of replanting the tooth. You may gently rinse the tooth in cool water of before reinserting into the socket. A tooth that has been out of the socket more than 90 minutes has a rapidly decreasing chance for successful reattachment and long-term retention.

Other dental specialists such as an endodontist (root canal specialist) may be called upon to perform root canal therapy on the avulsed tooth, and/or a restorative dentist who may need to repair or rebuild fractured teeth. In the event that injured teeth cannot be saved or repaired, dental implants are often now utilized as predictable replacements for missing teeth.

If you have any questions with regards to our scope of trauma services please do not hesitate to contact any of our support staff at The Pacific Coast Center for Oral, Facial and Cosmetic Surgery; The Pacific Coast Center for Oral, Facial and Cosmetic Surgery, Pasadena office Phone Number 626-440-0099.