Nine Steps to Take When Your Permanent Tooth Gets Knocked Out of Your Mouth

By Oral Answers

😬 Tooth knocked out? Immediately put it in milk since it will help the tooth survive longer. Then call us ASAP → (202) 610-0600 Have you ever had a tooth knocked out? Tell us your story!  The Oral Surgery DC Team

No matter how careful people are, there always seems to be a way to knock out a tooth. When a tooth gets knocked out, the technical name for this condition is called tooth avulsion. Unfortunately, when a tooth gets knocked out, panic ensues. There may be many people around who “know what to do” and want to help you save your tooth.

It is true that once a tooth gets knocked out, it can successfully be re-implanted and return to normal function. However the key lies in what happens during the critical period while the tooth is outside of your mouth. Here, I offer nine simple steps to take when your tooth gets knocked out to keep it healthy so that it can return to its favorite past-time of chewing delicious meals.

As a general rule, the sooner a tooth can get back into its socket inside the mouth, the better chance it has to survive long-term.

1. When a tooth gets knocked out, it is important to pick it up while only touching the crown of the tooth (the crown is the part of the tooth that is normally visible inside your mouth.)  If you can’t find the tooth try as hard as you can to find it.  Although aspiration rarely occurs, it is possible that the tooth could’ve been inadvertently breathed in by the accident victim.

2. Next, rinse off the tooth very gently with tap water, saliva (spit), or saline solution. It is important not to scrub the root of the tooth (the root is the part of the tooth that is normally hidden below the gums in your mouth and is more yellow than the crown.) Many people think it is important to scrub the tooth to get all of the germs off. However, if you scrub the tooth, you could scrub away the periodontal ligament or the cementum, which both help to hold the tooth in the socket. By scrubbing them away, you will reduce the chances of the tooth permanently re-attaching itself inside the mouth. Soap and chemicals such as bleach will damage the cells that are left on the tooth which could make successful re-implantation impossible.

3. Try to put the tooth gently back in its socket and steadily hold it there. Sometimes, people may not know exactly how to put the tooth back in or there may be doubts about how to put it back in. Other times, the person who had the tooth knocked out isn’t cooperative enough to allow the tooth to be re-implanted. In this case, go to step #4.

Before putting the tooth back in the mouth, make sure that you are dealing with a permanent tooth, you could end up damaging the developing permanent tooth if you try to re-implant a baby tooth back on top of it. If you’re not sure, it is best to not try to re-implant the tooth, simply go to step #4 below.

You also want to make sure that you have the whole tooth. If it fractured somewhere along the root, you might want to wait to have the dentist look at it first to see if the tooth can be saved. In this case, go to step #4 below.

4. If you can’t put the tooth back in for any reason, you need to put the tooth into an appropriate solution to keep it healthy. The goal is to keep the tooth moist. There are a variety of solutions that will work to store the tooth, however some are better than others.

The absolute best place to store a tooth is in a balanced salt solution.A good way to get a balanced salt solution is by purchasing the Save-A-Tooth Emergency Tooth Preserving System. Many schools and athletic facilities have the Save-A-Tooth or a similar system readily available in the event of an accident. You can learn more about tooth avulsion at this page.

The next best place to store the tooth is in milk because it is fairly biologically compatible with teeth and doesn’t contain too many bacteria. Milk has been proven to keep the periodontal ligament cells healthy in studies such as this one by Dr. Martin Trope.

You should avoid storing the tooth in pure water as this will cause the periodontal ligament cells to die. Another place to avoid storing the tooth is in your mouth since it contains a lot of bacteria, lacks the optimum electrolyte balance, and has an incompatible pH (acidity) for the periodontal ligament cells.

You should never dry the tooth off or store it in a towel or tissue since the cells on the root of the tooth need to remain wet in order to stay alive.

5. Go to the dentist. The dentist will be able to help you determine if the tooth is in good enough condition to return to full function. If the tooth looks good, then the dentist will take some x-rays to determine if optimum healing will be able to occur. The dentist will then be able to splint (attach) the tooth to the teeth next to it so it can be immobilized and have proper support for healing to take place.If the tooth has been out of the mouth for more than 20 minutes, then the dentist will need to soak the tooth in a balanced salt solution for about a half hour and then put it in an antibiotic before re-implanting it. The salt solution helps to keep the periodontal ligament cells alive and reduces the chance of them dying and your tooth attaching directly to bone (a condition known as ankylosis, which has a variety of problems associated with it — I’ll get into that in a future article.)

6. Take antibiotics and get a tetanus booster shot if you haven’t had one in the past five to ten years. Because it would be impossible to sterilize the tooth before re-implanting it without killing the cells in the tooth, you will probably end up introducing a small amount of bacteria into your body. To be on the safe side, your dentist will probably prescribe you 7-10 days’ worth of antibiotics. Also, if you haven’t had a tetanus booster shot in the past five to ten years, you should go to your doctor to get one.

7. After 7-10 days, go back to the dentist. The dentist will then remove the splint. Studies have shown that if the splint is kept on the teeth for more than 7-10 days, there is a good chance that cells in your body will start to eat away at the root of the tooth (a process known as root resorption).

However, there is an exception to this rule. If the tooth was knocked out of an adolescent, then there is a possibility that the pulp inside the tooth will also heal. To allow this to happen, it is recommended to keep the splint attached for three to four weeks in younger teeth.

8. Bite carefully until the tooth heals. The tooth will still be slightly movable when the dentist removes the splint. It is necessary to remove the splint this early because if the splint is left in too long, there are complications that can arise.

9. Hope for the best and return to your dentist often. If the tooth is young, the pulp may heal. If the tooth is a few years old and is fully formed, the pulp will probably not survive. In these cases, the tooth can still be successfully re-implanted, but it will need to have a root canal treatment performed where the dead pulp tissue is removed and replaced with a compatible material. Also, the tooth may get eaten away a little bit by the cells around the periodontal ligament.

The roots on teeth that have been re-implanted have a tendency to slowly dissolve, so it is important that your dentist take exam the tooth at six month intervals to monitor the status of the tooth.

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Foods That Fight Mouth Bacteria

By SFGATE

🍎🍏 FUN FACT: Apples help kill bacteria in the mouth that causes bad breath! Learn more about other foods that fight bacteria. The Oral Surgery DC team

An apple is a natural tooth cleaner. The fiber content of the skin gently scraps plaque from the surface of your teeth. Its high water content keeps it from sticking to your enamel and it gives you vitamins that promote healthy gum tissue. Other foods are good tools for oral health as well, offering benefits similar to those of apples, but also providing anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties. Some stop the growth of existing bacteria in your mouth and some even kill the pathogens that can cause infections and periodontal disease.

Cranberries

Cranberry juice may help stop plaque from forming in your mouth. According to a group of researchers from Israel who published their findings in the “Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy” in 2004, cranberry juice helps stop the growth of biofilms, collections of microorganisms that grow on your teeth and cause tooth decay and periodontal disease. Because previous studies had shown that non-dialysable material in cranberry juice stops the growth of a variety of oral bacteria, the researchers believe that its ability to keep biofilms from collecting may add to the cranberry’s benefits to your oral health.

Grape products

Dr. Christine Wu, of the College of Dentistry at University of Illinois, has conducted a series of studies on the effect of grape products on teeth. In one of them, published in the “Journal of Nutrition” in 2009, she says that raisins contain antimicrobial compounds that can keep oral pathogens from growing, preventing dental diseases. She also tested grape seed extract and found that it promotes remineralization of tooth enamel after root procedures. Grapes, which are rich in polyphenols, flavonoids, iron, potassium, calcium and B vitamins, promote general health, she adds, which is also beneficial for oral health.

Blackberries

Blackberries may kill pathogens that cause periodontal infections, according to researchers from the University of North Carolina and University of Kentucky. In 2012, they published a study in the “Journal of Periodontal Research” in which they subjected 10 types of mouth bacteria to blackberry extract and found that it offers more than just anti-inflammatory benefits. The compound, they concluded, also showed anti-viral activity, as well as antibacterial properties that reduced the amount of damaging pathogens that cause periodontal disease.

Garlic

Garlic is known for giving people bad breath, but its antimicrobial properties may make it a good tool to kill mouth bacteria. According to researchers from South Yorkshire, UK, who published a study in the “Archives of Oral Biology,” garlic contains allicin, which inhibits the activity of a compound that causes periodontitis. Garlic also fights gingivalis, a bacteria associated with periodontal disease. The researchers suggest that garlic extract or allicin may be helpful for preventing or treating some types of oral disease.

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The Evolution of the Toothbrush

By Irma Wallace, Infographic Journal

🐴 Can you imagine brushing your teeth with horse hair?! Take a look at just how far the toothbrush has come. The Oral Surgery DC team

Attention to dental hygiene dates all the way back to 3500 BCE with the Chew Stick in Egypt and Babylonia. Centuries later, we have seen tremendous advances in the dental hygiene industry. Check out this Evolution of the Toothbrush by Fortis to understand the incredible transformation of the dental hygiene industry from 3500 BCE until today.

Article from:http://buff.ly/2euAumC

Why Sharks Don’t Get Cavities

By Megan Garber, The Atlantic 

Should sharks be our role models for oral hygiene? Learn about the two species with “toothpaste-teeth”! The Oral Surgery DC team

Sharks live lives that are, to human sensibilities, mostly unenviable. The creatures are constantly moving. They are hunted by predators far higher than they are on the food chain. They are often made to dine on manmade trash. They are totally oblivious to the subtler plot points of Orange Is the New Black.

But sharks, as a group, do have one evolutionary leg (fin?) up on us humans — one that has nothing to do with the terrifying sharpness of their enormous teeth and everything to do with the evolutionary resilience of those teeth. Sharks, it turns out, can’t get cavities.

In part, that puts sharks in company with most non-human animals. While creatures who don’t have access to Colgate have dental problems just like we do — among them tartar buildup that can cause gum disease — cavities are a largely human affliction, the result (for the most part) of our affinity for sugar.

What makes sharks unique, however, is that their teeth seem to be coated in fluoride. Yes: coated in fluoride. According to research published last year in the Journal of Structural Biology, at least two species of sharks, makos and tiger sharks, feature teeth whose outer coatings “contained one hundred percent fluoride.” Which is a nice cuspid coup. It’d be, for us, essentially like walking around with a perma-coating of toothpaste on our teeth.

While the Structural Biology research focused only on the two species, the makos and tiger sharks were chosen precisely because they feed in such different ways: makos rip the flesh off their prey, messily, while tiger sharks use their teeth to neatly slice through their meals. Since both species feature toothpaste-teeth, there’s reason to believe that those teeth are a feature enjoyed by other shark species, as well. And the choppers don’t just protect sharks against tooth decay: since teeth coated with fluoroapatites are less water-soluble than hydroxyapatites— the stuff that coats most mammals’ teeth, including our own — sharks’ teeth are also particularly suited to their underwater environment.

So take a moment to appreciate the elegantly Darwinian design of shark teeth. Then push your thoughts of those teeth aside to where they belong: your nightmares.

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