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Steps You Should Take When You Lose a Tooth

The American Association of Endodontists estimates that adults and children in the United States lose about five million teeth every year to a sports injury, accidental fall, or other trauma. You may be surprised to learn, however, that emergency dental care can restore your smile.

Dr. Brett Lent is an award-winning dentist who provides exceptional general and cosmetic dental services, including emergency dental care for adults and children at First Impression Dental Fresno in Fresno, California. Our entire team is committed to providing you and your family with the most innovative and up-to-date dental care available.

Very often, when treated quickly, a knocked-out tooth will reattach to the root system and function normally afterward. It’s critical, however, to preserve the tooth until you’re seen by our team. But how do you do that?

Dr. Lent is well-known for his skill in restorative dentistry and is happy to share a few tips about how to protect a knocked-out tooth until you reach the office.

Find the tooth

If you’ve lost a tooth due to trauma, it’s important that you retrieve it quickly, being careful to pick it up by the crown (chewing surface) only. Don’t touch the root system since this can damage sensitive tissue. Handle the tooth as little as possible but rinse with water if the tooth is covered with debris or significantly soiled.

Put it back where it belongs

If you can, place the tooth, root side down, back in its original socket. This step takes a gentle touch. Be sure to avoid forcing the tooth into position and don’t attempt this if there is significant trauma to the surrounding gums or other tissue structures.

Handle with care

It’s important to keep the tooth moist until you arrive at our office. If possible, place the tooth in its original socket. Hold it in place with your fingers or close your mouth very gently to keep it secure. The key is to hold it lightly in position while avoiding pressure on the tooth or surrounding tissue structures.

If you can’t place it in the socket, try tucking the tooth between your gums and cheek. If necessary, place the tooth in a small container of milk. Don’t use tap water to transport the tooth since this can cause further damage to the root system. Never wrap the knocked-out tooth in tissue, gauze, etc. 

Consider this a dental emergency

A knocked-out tooth is a dental emergency requiring immediate treatment. We encourage you to call our office as soon as possible after the trauma or accident so we can provide directions regarding your next steps.

Call First Impression Dental Fresno today for all your dentistry needs, including emergency care. You can also book your appointment online.

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