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May 24, 2016
Hello FVDCers!

Filling in for Dr. Pointner today! I was recently at a lecture and it was a great reminder on what to do after a tooth injury. The most common causes of tooth injury are slips and falls. Since the summer is such an active time, we could all use some useful tips concerning what to do if you bang you tooth!

 

If you or a family member sustains trauma to a tooth (or teeth, yikes!) it is important to get in to see us as soon as you can. Upon impact in an injury, teeth can become chipped, broken/fractured, cracked/split, become loose, or even experience avulsion--when a tooth comes completely out of the socket. In the case of an emergency where more than just the mouth is injured, seek prompt medical attention (ER), especially if there is uncontrolled bleeding, unconsciousness, or repeated vomiting. The sooner you can come in the more you can minimize your chances of long term damage. And remember, teeth injuries are managed differently based on if they are baby teeth or adult teeth.

 

Until you can be seen, there are few things you can do. Assess the damage and identify all affected areas of injury. Gently feel around to see how many teeth were affected, and check if the teeth are in place. If the teeth are in place, gently rinse/clean the area. If there is bleeding, cleanse the area and apply firm pressure for 15 min at a time to help the bleeding stop. Use an ice pack if there is swelling (10 min on and 10 off), and this will help diminish associated swelling. Warm salt-water rinses can be done to help keep the area clean.  Avoid eating on the injured area, and stick to a soft food diet. Take OTC pain medication, preferably Ibuprofen (as long as you aren’t taking anything that would react poorly to taking an NSAID and are not allergic) to help manage pain/toothache.

If an adult tooth has avulsed, a.k.a. has fallen out of the mouth. Locate the tooth, and hold the tooth by the crown of the tooth. This is the white part of the tooth. Avoid holding the tooth by the root (which is yellow in color). DO NOT RINSE tooth and avoid wiping off tooth. Replant tooth as soon as possible and hold in place by biting down. If you know for a fact the avulsed tooth is a baby tooth, you don't need to replant tooth.
If you are unable to re-position the tooth back in, store the tooth in one of the following liquids (in order of preference):

* Hanks Balanced Salt Solution, can order online from Save A Tooth (see link below)

*Saliva


*Saline


*Milk


If you are the on the way to see us, and you have no where else to store your tooth, you can store the tooth in your cheek, as long as you don’t swallow it! You can buy a Save-A-Tooth-Kit online, and it is an ideal storing medium for teeth that have avulsed and it gives us a much higher success rate for teeth that have been replanted.

One more big tip ... Always wear a mouth guard/sports guard when engaging in sports. If you don't already have one, let us know.  Have a great summer!

Saema Qadri DDS

Links for Reference
http://www.aapd.org/media/policies_guidelines/g_trauma.pdf
http://www.uptodate.com/contents/mouth-and-dental-injuries-in-children-beyond-the-basics
http://www.uptodate.com/contents/head-injury-in-children-and-adolescents-beyond-the-basics?source=see_link
http://saveatooth.com

Posted by FVDC Office on May 24, 2016 at 7:05 PM
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