Save That Knocked Out Tooth!
If your child comes running to you with a bloody mouth and hole where a front tooth used to be, don’t panic. Take a deep breath. If your child lost a baby tooth, let it go. If your child lost a permanent tooth, that is a dental emergency. But teeth can often be re-implanted. You can increase your child’s chances of keeping the tooth by taking the following steps.
- After ensuring that your child has no other serious injuries, do your best to find the tooth. If the tooth is whole, pick it up by the crown (the top part that you use to chew) instead of the root. This is very important—holding it by the root can damage the most fragile part of the tooth, which needs to be in good condition for the tooth to be implanted successfully.
- Rinse the tooth gently in saline or milk. (Tap water can be used if these aren’t available, but the chlorine in the water can damage the tooth; use water only if you have no other option.) Rinse your child’s mouth with warm water.
- If your child is old enough to keep the loose tooth in his mouth without swallowing it, reinsert the tooth into the socket, and have your child bite down gently on some gauze. If the tooth is broken or fragmented, or your child can’t keep it in his mouth for any reason, you can either place the tooth in a glass of milk or keep it inside your own mouth, between your lower gum and cheek. This will keep the tooth “alive” until you can come to our office.
- Come directly to our office (or the emergency room if the accident occurs when we aren’t available). We will place the tooth back into the mouth, along with a “splint” that will hold it in place.
Sometimes, the body will reject the tooth and it can’t be able to be saved. But if you take these measures, you are giving your child the best chance to remember the accident as a funny story rather than as a permanent injury.
Give us a call at 509-891-7070 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jared today!