Emergency Dental Care: What to Do When You Knock Out a Tooth


Accidents happen, and a knocked-out tooth can be a stressful situation. However, knowing what to do in an emergency can save your tooth and minimize potential complications.

Our expert dentists are here to identify issues and individualized solutions. Whether you’re dealing with a dislodged tooth, bleeding, or oral trauma, visit us for prompt, reliable emergency dentistry in Duncan.

Immediate Actions to Take

When your tooth comes out of its socket, here are some immediate steps you can take.

  • Stay Calm: This is essential. The calmer you are, the clearer you can think and the smarter your decisions will be.
  • Retrieve the Tooth: Handle the tooth by the crown (the visible part) and avoid touching the roots. Gently rinse with milk or saline; avoid scrubbing or using soap to clean if dirty.
  • Reposition the Tooth: If possible, try to reposition the tooth back into its socket. Bite down lightly on a towel or gauze to hold it in place.
  • Store the Tooth: If repositioning is not feasible, store it in milk or your saliva to keep it moist. Time is crucial, so aim to see a dentist within 30 minutes for the best chance of successful re-implantation.

Seek Immediate Dental Care

Visit an emergency dentist promptly. Call ahead to inform them of the situation. Many dental offices have emergency slots available; prompt action increases the chances of saving the tooth.

For emergency dental steps, seeking immediate dental care is crucial to address issues promptly and ensure optimal oral health.

What to Expect at the Dentist’s Clinic

When patients get there, a comprehensive dental examination of the tooth and its surrounding tissues will be done. To ascertain the extent of the damage, x-rays could be obtained. Depending on the severity, the dentist will recommend one of the following treatments:

  • Re-Implantation – If the tooth is in good condition, the dentist may attempt to re-implant it. This is more likely to succeed if you seek immediate care.
  • Splinting – If the tooth is partially dislodged, the dentist might use a splint to stabilize it while it is healing. This promotes natural reattachment.
  • Root Canal – In cases where the tooth’s nerves are damaged, a root canal may be necessary. This procedure removes damaged tissue and preserves the tooth.

Post-Treatment Care and Recovery

Following dental intervention, diligent post-operative care is vital for a successful recovery.

  • Medication – Your dentist may prescribe antibiotics to prevent infection. Over-the-counter pain relievers can manage discomfort.
  • Avoid Certain Foods – Stick to a soft diet and avoid biting on the treated tooth. This aids the healing process and prevents additional trauma.
  • Good Oral Hygiene – Maintain proper oral hygiene, but be gentle around the affected area.

Your dentist will provide specific instructions on cleaning and caring for the injured tooth. If you have inquiries about these oral health preservation methods, let your dentist know.

Preventing Dental Emergencies

While accidents are unpredictable, some precautions can minimize the risk of dental emergencies:

  • Use Mouthguards: If you participate in contact sports or activities with a risk of injury, wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth.
  • Avoid Chewing Ice or Hard Objects: Chewing on ice or complex objects can lead to tooth fractures. Be cautious to protect your teeth from unnecessary trauma.
  • Regular Dental Check-Ups: Schedule regular dental check-ups to address potential issues before they become emergencies.
  • Emergency Dental Kit: Consider keeping a minor dental emergency kit with essentials like gauze, a small container, and the dentist’s contact information.

A dislodged tooth can cause feelings of anxiety and worry. But adhering to your dentist’s instructions and dutifully practicing a hygiene regime at home will help you avoid permanent tooth loss.

We are Here to Help You Repair Your Smile

Cowichan Valley Dental is your dedicated partner for optimal oral health. Our commitment to excellence extends beyond dentistry, fostering trust and satisfaction. Our dentists in Duncan are at your disposal, ready to help you navigate your unique oral health journey and achieve a healthier, brighter smile.
Your smile is our priority at Cowichan Valley Dental; email or call us today!