September 22, 2023
Medically Reviewed By Matthew T. Streelman, DDS, MD

Mioral surgery blog knocked tooth | mercer island oral & maxillofacial surgeryThe sudden loss of a tooth due to an accident or injury can leave you devastated and overwhelmed. But losing a tooth due to an accident or injury doesn’t necessarily mean the end of your smile. The length of time the tooth was outside the mouth, the condition of the tooth, and the presence of any associated injuries all affect the potential for successful replantation. Incorporating these valuable tips on handling, storing, and replanting the tooth significantly enhances the likelihood of successfully adding your tooth back into your smile.

Tips for Handling

When faced with a knocked-out tooth, time is of the essence. The faster you act, the higher the likelihood of successful replantation. The first and most crucial step is to ensure the preservation and protection of the knocked-out tooth.

Here are some important tips to remember when handling a knocked-out tooth:

  • Handle with care. Avoid touching the delicate roots when picking up the tooth. Any pressure on the roots can harm the tooth and diminish the chances of successful replantation. Instead, hold the tooth by the crown, the surface of the tooth used for chewing.
  • Rinse gently with water. If the tooth is dirty, rinse it gently with water while touching the chewing surface. Avoid using soap and chemicals or brushing or scrubbing the tooth, as these can cause further damage and kill the tooth.

Storing the Tooth

Next, you’ll want to store the tooth in a way that will increase your implantation chances. There are a few different storage options.

Next to the cheek: Tuck the tooth gently inside your mouth, next to the cheek. This helps keep the tooth moist and minimizes the risk of it drying out. This approach works if you contact your emergency dentist or oral surgeon in time to see them the same day your tooth is knocked out.

Saliva preservation: If keeping the tooth in your mouth is impossible, place it in a clean container covered in your saliva. Saliva helps maintain the tooth’s moisture and vitality until you can reach the dentist.

Emergency tooth preservation kit: If neither of the above options is feasible, use an emergency tooth preservation kit readily available at pharmacies. These kits are specifically designed to store knocked-out teeth in an optimal environment for a short time, maximizing the chances of successful replantation.

Seek Immediate Attention

Once the tooth has been rinsed and stored, it is crucial to seek immediate dental attention. If the tooth is healthy and uninfected, it can be replanted into your smile with the help of an oral surgeon specializing in emergency services or an emergency dentist.

While tooth loss can be emotionally devastating, it’s important to remember that there are options, and compassionate professionals are ready to guide you through the restoration journey. You’ll want to contact an oral surgeon specializing in facial trauma immediately to schedule a replantation visit. Time is critical, as the longer the tooth remains outside the mouth, the higher the chances of irreversible damage. Mercer Island Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery offers advanced solutions for facial trauma, from replanting knocked-out teeth to replacing lost teeth with dental implants when replantation is not possible. Contact Mercer Island Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery today, and let us walk this healing path together.