If you or someone you know has a tooth (or teeth) knocked out it’s important to remain calm and act quickly.
Step 1: Locate the tooth as quickly as possible and pick it up by the crown. Handle with care – avoid touching the ‘root’ of the tooth!
Step 2: If dirty, rinse the tooth with some milk, or if milk is not available rinse using tap water but only for a second or two. Do not scrub or soak the tooth.
Step 3: Insert the tooth back into its previous position in the mouth, making sure it is the right way around and in the right place. Compare it to the surrounding teeth to make sure you’ve got it right. Once it’s in, gently bite down on a clean piece of soft cloth or tissue to help keep the tooth in place.
If it is ‘wobbly’, then folding a small piece of aluminium foil over the area can help keep the tooth in place, or if you have your mouthguard on hand, put it back into your mouth to stabilise the traumatised tooth.
If you can’t get the tooth back in, don’t force it. Keep the tooth moist at all times by storing it in a small container with a small amount (enough to cover the whole tooth) of milk or saliva. Do not place the tooth in water.
Do not wrap the tooth in tissue or cloth as this will dry out the tooth.
Step 4: See a dentist IMMEDIATELY, ideally within 30 minutes. The sooner the tooth is replaced, the greater the likelihood it will survive. Many dental practices or dental hospitals are open for emergencies and often have after hours care and contact details on their website or answering machine.