What to Do If Your Tooth Gets Knocked Out

What to Do If Your Tooth Gets Knocked Out

Of course, on of the first things you should do if your tooth gets knocked out is make an emergency dentist appointment. However, depending on where and when your accident happened, it may be hours before you’ll actually be in the dentist’s chair. There is a good chance that the dentist will be able to put it back in place regardless, but only if you follow a few vital steps between the accident and your arrival at the dentist’s office.

Your primary goal after your tooth has come out is to keep the tooth alive, which means making sure the tooth root remains moist and as undamaged as possible. The tooth root is the tissues that provide blood flow and nutrients to the tooth. If these tissues dry out they can die, which makes it much harder for for the dentist to put it back in its socket successfully.

First, you should try to immediately fit the tooth back in its socket. If you manage to get the tooth back in place, you can bite down on gauze or a wet tea bag to keep in there until you get to your emergency dentist appointment. If you can’t get the tooth back in its socket, you’ll need to use other means to keep it safe.

If the knocked out tooth as dirt or debris on it, rinse it off using tap water or bottled water. Always hold the tooth by the crown (opposite end as the root) and don’t touch the root, as this may damage it. Do not brush the tooth or try to sterilize or clean it with alcohol or hydrogen peroxide. These things will do more harm than good.

Next, to keep the tooth moist you need to put it either cow’s milk, or if milk isn’t available, put it in saliva. You can also keep the tooth in your mouth, either under your tongue or between your gums and your cheek. But be careful not to swallow it! Don’t put the tooth in water to keep it moist. Water is not as gentle as milk or saliva and can cause damage to the cells in the tooth root. Once you get to your emergency dentist appointment, the dentist will take care of sterilizing the tooth in a way that doesn’t risk damaging it.

The dentist will assess the damage to your tooth and your mouth and determine the best way to proceed. Usually this involves cleaning the area and the tooth and gently inserting it back into its socket. Sometimes the dentist will apply a splint to keep the tooth in position as it heals back into place. This splint resembles braces and will usually be in place for 1-2 weeks.

The biggest thing to remember when a tooth gets knocked out is that it can be put back if you follow the right steps! Be sure to call your dentist for an emergency dentist appointment right away and your smile should be back to normal in no time.

Please note: If you injuries could be life threatening, contact emergency medical services right away and worry about the dentist later!

Bonus fact: The clinical term for a knocked out tooth is an avulsed tooth.

What Is Toothpaste Made Of?

What Is Toothpaste Made Of?

The official name for toothpaste is dentrifice, which means any substance intended to remove debris from teeth in order to prevent tooth decay. Dentrifice used to include both tooth powders and toothpastes, until the invention of the toothpaste tube made pre-mixed pastes much more popular because they were more convenient. Dentrifice is still the French word for toothpaste, though it hasn’t been used in English since around the turn of the 20th century.

All toothpastes have at least two key components: abrasives and surfactants. Abrasives are rough materials that aid the toothbrush in scrubbing debris such as plaque, tartar and food particles from teeth. Perhaps the most well-known toothpaste abrasive is sodium bicarbonate, or baking soda. Other abrasives include aluminum hydroxide, calcium carbonate, calcium phosphate, and silicas.

Abrasives also polish teeth so they’re shiny and smooth, but using them too roughly can actually damage teeth by stripping away enamel, which makes teeth more vulnerable to tooth decay. That’s why it’s better to use a soft-bristled toothbrush than a hard bristle one, and to brush thoroughly, not hard.

Surfactants are compounds that help toothpaste get nice and foamy. This lathering effect has a real purpose: it helps evenly distribute the abrasives and other components, such as fluoride. While your dentist and the American Dental Association recommends toothpastes with fluoride for most people, there are fluoride free varities for those with a fluoride sensitivity. Fluoride is a natural mineral that helps prevent tooth decay and can even remineralize degraded tooth enamel.

Other inactive ingredients found in toothpaste include water (which can account for nearly 40% of what’s in the tube) and chemicals to keep the paste from drying out, such as propylene glycol and glycerol. Some pastes also include anti-bacterial agents that can help eliminate the bacteria that cause gum disease. Specialized toothpastes, such as whitening or anti-sensitivity, may contain other compounds that contribute to their particular purpose.

If you’re ever feeling overwhelmed by the choices in the toothpaste aisle, feel free to talk to our dental care team about which toothpaste is right for you.

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