What to Do if You Fracture a Tooth (and Other Dental Emergencies)

Accidents happen — whether it’s because of an aggressive sports activity, a car collision or a slippery staircase, facial injuries are sometimes unavoidable and can fracture, break, displace or knock out a tooth.

A group of dental associations, including the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, recognizes April as National Facial Protection Month. Here are some tips to prepare you in case of an accident:

In Case Of a…

Broken or fractured tooth
If you are able to, collect the pieces of the tooth and store them in a glass of milk or water. Make an emergency appointment with your dentist, who may be able to reattach the broken pieces to the tooth. Take an over-the-counter pain reliever to sooth discomfort.

Knocked-out tooth
If you can, schedule an emergency appointment with your dentist as quickly as possible to reimplant the tooth. If you can locate the tooth, grasp it by the wide part (i.e., the crown) and not the tooth’s root. Avoid touching the root altogether. Rinse the tooth.

Place the tooth back in its socket, cover with a piece of gauze or tissue and bite down on the tooth. If you can’t do that, store the tooth in cold milk or in a cup of your own spit. Whatever you do, don’t let the tooth dry out and try to get it reimplanted within an hour for the best chance of saving it.

Displaced tooth
If the tooth is hanging from the socket, try to carefully reposition the tooth if possible. Schedule an emergency appointment with your dentist to secure it back in place.

Cut inside the mouth
Rinse your mouth out with cold water and bite down on a piece of gauze or a clean cloth/tissue and apply pressure to the cut. Go to the emergency room at the nearest hospital to seek treatment.

Jaw injury
If your teeth fit together when the mouth is closed, apply ice to reduce swelling and take oral medication to soothe pain. Eat only soft foods. If your symptoms do not improve within a day, schedule an appointment with your dentist or an oral surgeon.

If your teeth do not fit together when the mouth is closed, head to your nearest emergency room. To immobilize your jaw, wrap a cloth bandage under your chin and secure it on top of your head. Use ice to reduce swelling.

Contact Our Oral Surgeon

If you or a loved one has had a dental emergency and is seeking an experienced oral surgeon in the Orlando area, please contact Dr. Ronald Trevisani today for an appointment.