Has your tooth fallen out, and you aren’t in a condition to read what to do? If you’re in Columbus, OH, call (614) 848-5001, and we’ll talk you through the steps, then get you in for an emergency dental appointment.

Knowing how to deal with a knocked-out tooth ahead of time can save you time and money. Keep reading to find out what to do.

Your teeth are strong and should be able to stay in place despite the forces it encounters on a daily basis as part of biting and chewing. In addition, your teeth should be able to withstand significant blows as part of an accident or even when you are the victim of intentional violence.

However, sometimes the forces are too much for your teeth to endure, and they may fall out. This might be because the forces were excessive, because your teeth are weakened, or a combination of both.

The following guide will help you take appropriate steps to maximize the likelihood of saving the tooth.

Respond Quickly and Calmly

The first 30 minutes are crucial for saving a knocked-out tooth. However, panic can slow you down, so try to remain calm after your tooth is knocked out. Take a moment to calm yourself, then quickly follow these steps:

Step 1: Pick up the Tooth by the Crown

Handle the tooth by the crown–the part of the tooth that is normally visible and that you use to chew. You can tell this part of the tooth because it’s smoother and whiter than the root. The root is yellow, and rough, and may have soft tissue attached to it. If you touch the root, it can reduce the odds of successful replantation.

Step 2: Rinse the Tooth Gently

Clean any debris or dirt from the tooth. Note that the tooth may have soft tissue attached–do not try to wash this off. Use only water, milk, or salt water. Don’t use any soap, cleaning solution, or chemicals.

Step 3: Inspect the Tooth

Check to see if the tooth is all in one piece. Note that the tooth may not look like the cartoon image you have in your mind. Front teeth–the ones most likely to be knocked out–have only one root. Molars–the square teeth in the back of the mouth–may have two or more roots. Most important is that the tooth should look unbroken and entirely covered by the outer layer of enamel (crown) and cementum (root).

If the tooth is broken, the odds of successful replantation are very low.

Step 4: Find the Rest of the Tooth

If the tooth is broken, locate the other pieces. You might have broken pieces loose in your mouth. Spit these out to avoid swallowing them. You might also have a full or partial root in the socket. Leave these alone–do not touch them or attempt to get them out.

Step 5: Preserve the Tooth

Protect the tooth to give yourself the best chance of successful re-implantation. It needs to stay moist and, ideally, warm. The best place to put the tooth is back in the socket–if you can easily get it in correctly. Gently slide the tooth into place–don’t try to force it in place.

If you can’t get the tooth back into the socket, the next best option is to place it in your mouth between your cheek and gums.
Otherwise, put the tooth in a hard-sided container with milk, saliva, or tooth preservation solution if you have it.

Step 6: Contact Dr. Firouzian

If you haven’t already done so, contact Dr. Firouzian for an emergency appointment.

How Likely Is It to Save a Knocked-Out Tooth?

woman smiling after tooth replacement

The survival rate for knocked-out teeth varies according to the studies. However, most studies agree that between half and two-thirds of teeth can be successfully replanted, depending on how you treat the tooth after it is knocked out. In this study, 100% of teeth stored in milk or saliva were saved, even those that had been out of the mouth for more than two hours!

However, only 40% of teeth stored dry could be saved, even if they’d been out of the mouth for less than half an hour.

Success was measured up to 3.5 years after injury. It’s possible for teeth that are initially replanted successfully to fail later.

Tooth Replacement Options

If your tooth cannot be successfully replanted, you have options to replace it. At Firouzian Dentistry, we offer three good tooth replacement options:

Dental Implants

Dental implants are replacement tooth roots that attach to your jawbone. These can support a dental crown, bridge, or denture to replace as many teeth as you need–up to and including an entire arch of teeth. These replacement teeth are attractive and fully functional–it’s like getting your natural teeth back.

Partial Dentures

Partial dentures are removable tooth replacements that use an appliance in your mouth to support replacement teeth. These replacement teeth can be cosmetic, and people can often learn to talk with them. However, they are not very functional for biting and chewing.

Dental Bridge

A dental bridge uses your natural teeth to support a replacement tooth. The replacement tooth attaches to dental crowns over your adjacent teeth. This gives you a fully functional replacement tooth. You can bite and chew normally with it. However, a dental bridge is only useful in situations where neighboring teeth are strong and healthy enough to support the replacement tooth.

Get Help for a Knocked-Out Tooth in Columbus

If you’ve knocked out a tooth and you’re in Columbus, OH, Firouzian Dentistry can help. We will work to get you in quickly and preserve your tooth or teeth so you can continue to enjoy a beautiful, healthy fire.

Please call (614) 848-5001 for an emergency appointment at Firouzian Dentistry in Columbus, OH.