What If I Have A Tooth Broken Or Knocked Out?
We always recommend a mouthguard when playing any sort of contact sport or when doing physical activities where a fall is a likely possibility, such as skateboarding, rollerblading, or gymnastics. Mouthguards will give you or your child the best possible protection for the teeth and smile.
However, no matter how careful you are, accidents can still happen. Here are some tips on what to do if a tooth is broken or knocked out in an accident.
– Gently clean the injured area of the lips or cheek and apply ice
– Save the tip of the tooth if you can find it and call your dentist right away. It may be possible to bond the tooth back together.
– Do not scrub the piece of the tooth. Rinse gently only if it actually has dirt on it.
Knocked out tooth:
– Locate the tooth and hold it only by the crown (the wide part, not the pointed end/root)
– DO NOT RUB OR TOUCH THE ROOT
– Rinse the tooth ONLY if there is a need to remove debris but DO NOT scrub
– If possible, put the tooth back in its socket, cover with gauze or a tissue and bite gently to hold it in place
– If you cannot place it back in the socket, store the tooth in milk or dilute salt water, or place it between the cheek and gum (not if the patient is a small child)
– See your dentist immediately. It may be possible to replace the tooth.
An educational flier on first aid for dental trauma, “Prevent Accidents, but Know What to Do It One Occurs” can be downloaded from the AAO’s website at www.MyLifeMySmile.org