Not a lot of people know you can save your tooth if it gets knocked out and it can grow back alive. For example in a fight or (sport)accident. If you don’t follow these steps it reduces the chance of survival of your tooth drastically. When it dies it becomes brown-ish and it has a short life span.
A tooth is a living part of your body. The inner part of the tooth is called the pulpa. The pulpa consists of nerves, blood vessels, stem-cells and this can die. When this happens the lifespan of the tooth is short (around <10 years) and will eventually require an implant or a bridge because it will fall out. When your tooth gets knocked out (or you see one getting knocked out) it is important to follow these steps:
pick the tooth up by the crown (chewing surface). Never touch the root! These are surrounded by specialized cells which can be destroyed.
Inspect the tooth: is it covered in dirt? —> yes: rinse with milk or your own(!) saliva. By pouring the milk on it or spitting your saliva on it. (Clean drinkable (not tap water)) (not warm) water works too. Still don’t touch or wipe the root and don’t use chemicals like soap! If not this step can be skipped.
Preserve the tooth in a safe environment. There are several ways to do this:
a. (Best option) – look at the tooth. What is the front and what is the back? Place it back correctly and hold it in place with a rag (or something soft which is similar, like toilet paper or a piece of clothing). Between your teeth. Don’t fully bite it with force hold it in place gently.
b. When this is not possible because the person is either a child (because they can swallow it) unconscious, jaw is broken, or you don’t know where it belongs because several teeth are out: collect saliva of the person it belongs to (!) in a clean cup (or something similar which is clean like a cap of a water bottle) and put it gently in there. It should be completely covered in saliva (blood doesn’t matter). Milk works too.
c. Put it in your mouth between the cheek and your teeth with your mouth closed. Don’t touch it with your tongue.
- Contact a dentist. He needs to prepare an emergency. You need to go there asap. The dentist will clean the tooth, put it back and spalk it temporarily. This is not expensive (ask if this concerns you). After a few weeks you need to go back to see if the tooth survived. Often more than not it will survive when the above steps are done correctly.
Important: Never put back baby teeth. This might damage the gums. Not sure? Follow 3b or 3c.
Only the person where the knocked out belongs to can use his own saliva to rinse or clean it.
You need to go to the dentist as soon as possible (within an hour). After office hours? Google: emergency dentist + your city. Sometimes it is possible to call your own dentist (especially in rural areas). If this is not possible call a hospital
The milk or water can’t be warm.