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Broken Tooth

Many parents don't know is that a tooth can be saved and successfully re-implanted in their child's mouth. You don't have to plant a false tooth if you know what to do when your child's tooth gets dislodged. Here are some first aid tips and what you should do when... While your first impulse will be to run to your child and comfort him, don't forget that his tooth is lying on the floor. Before you rush for ice or to get any

help for your child, pick up the tooth. Pick it up very delicately - though not from the root. (You should try your best to avoid touching the root.) Pick it up by

the crown, which is the portion of the tooth visible outside the gum.

Wash it lightly under running water or with milk. Don't scrub it at all. A light rinse should be more than sufficient.

After washing the tooth, try and place it back in the cavity. This will save the nerve ends of the tooth from expiring, and it is essentially the best thing to do.

If you are unable to place the tooth back in the cavity, ask your child to keep it in his mouth between the cheek and gums. The saliva generated from the

mouth will keep it disinfected and alive. However, if your child is not conscious, don't place it in his mouth at all. He may swallow it.

If you are unable to place the tooth in your child's mouth for the reason outlined above, the next best thing would be to place it in a katori (small bowl) filled

with milk.

Rush your child to the dentist along with his tooth. The sooner your child reaches the dentist, the greater the chance of a successful re-implantation. Ideally,

your child's tooth should be re-implanted within 30 to 60 minutes.

Your child may or may not feel a lot of pain. If his nerve has been exposed, he would be shrieking with pain. If not, the pain wouldn't be as intense. If the pain

is acute, you could try giving your child pain-killing medication.

Similarly, there may or may not be a lot of blood loss. Sometimes the bleeding is severe, while other children have reported very little blood loss - no more

than a couple of drops.

If your child's baby tooth gets injured or falls out, you may get a fake tooth put, as it is essentially just used for a space maintainer for when your child's

permanent tooth develops. A baby or primary tooth is never re-implanted as doing so may give rise to complications.

Dr. Preethi V C

Consultant - Dentist

Rainbow Children's Hospital, Banjara Hills