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Have you or your child knocked out an adult tooth?

  • Make sure you find the tooth and hold it carefully by the crown (the part you can see normally in the mouth).
  • Do not try to clean the tooth with disinfectant or brush or scrub it in any way; the root of the tooth is very delicate.
  • If the tooth looks clean, gently push it back into the socket. Try to position it in the correct position but do not worry too much, the important thing is to get the tooth back into the socket.
  • If the tooth is dirty, gently rinse with either milk or cold water, and then place in the socket as above.
  • You may need to bite on a clean handkerchief to hold it in position.
  • It is important to get the tooth back in the socket within 20 minutes of the tooth being knocked out.
  • If you cannot put the tooth back into place, it is important not to let it dry out. For adults the best place to keep the tooth is in your mouth as the saliva will stop the tooth drying out. If this is not possible store the tooth in milk and take it with you to the dentist or hospital.
  • Make an appointment with your dentist. It is best to be seen as soon as possible on the same day. If you cannot see your dentist, go to your hospital’s Accident and Emergency department and ask to see the on-duty dentist.
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