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Your teeth are anchored into their sockets by strong periodontal ligaments. These ligaments are designed to be strong enough to handle daily activities, like biting, chewing and grinding foods. Unfortunately, it is possible for a hard blow to knock a tooth out of the socket.

This is almost always a traumatic experience, and your dentist, Dr. Sarah Frye, offers these tips for providing first-aid care while seeking professional treatment.

The first thing you should do is rinse your mouth with lukewarm salt water. This will help wash away any lingering blood and debris to give you a better look at the exposed socket.

If the tooth was fractured or damaged or if some of it remained in the socket, the tooth is likely lost. Dr. Sarah Frye will need to extract the remnants of the tooth and suture the gums. Once the area is healed, she can help you decide if you’d like to replace the knocked-out tooth with a dental implant or a dental bridge.

If the tooth was knocked cleanly out of the socket and none of it remains in your gums, you will need to keep it alive for there to be any chance of Dr. Sarah Frye implanting it back into your mouth.

You can keep it alive by holding it between your cheek and gums. There are also preservation products sold in stores. These products are canisters filled with a specially formulated nourishing gel. To use it, you simply place the knocked-out tooth in the jar and seal it. The tooth should stay alive long enough for Dr. Sarah Frye to assess the situation.

If you have just had a tooth knocked out in Lexington, North Carolina, you should not delay in contacting our office at 336.248.5057 to set up an emergency appointment.