Kids lose teeth due to trauma more often than we like. playing sports, falling off a bicycle….. Sometimes we just cannot prevent that from happening. What can we do?
this article is related to losing adult teeth in kids, not baby teeth.
Knocking off a tooth entirely out of its socket (called avulsed tooth) happens in 10% of population. When a baby tooth is avulsed, that has minimal effect as it will be replaced by the adult successor, but when an adult tooth is avulsed, this is a serious emergency, and time is an important factor in successful treatment. The best we can do is reimplant the tooth back, but the longer it stays out, the less chance for success.
so if you kid comes to you with his adult tooth in his hand after falling, call us immediately, and follow the instructions:
1- Try to calm your kid and assure him/her things will be fixed.
2- wash his/her face, remove all debris and dirt and blood.
3- make sure he/she has no more serious injuries. as much as we hate to lose a tooth, but fixing a broken rib is probably more important.
4- Hold the tooth by the crown (the whiter part). Clean the tooth under running water. do not rub with your fingers or anything.
5- where to place the tooth? in order of preference:
– your kid’s mouth, under the tongue, and keep talking to your kid making sure he/she doesn’t swallow the tooth
– Saline. if you have contact lens solution, that will do.
At the surgery, we will try to reimplant the tooth. We must fixate it to the adjacent teeth and put it out of occlusion. The root canal treatment must be followed as soon as possible, after the swelling has subsided.
But what if that fails, or if we couldn’t reimplant the tooth, may be it was lost!
Can we place an implant?
replacing a tooth with an implant is not acceptable for kids. Implants can only be placed on jaw that has ceased developing and growing. If an implant is placed into a growing jaw, it will affect the growth of the jaw and the eruption of teeth into their favourable position.
It is contraindicated to place an implant before the age of 21.
So what are the options?
1- a Plastic tooth called flipper. A removable partial denture, this is removable, the child needs to keep it clean and pay extra attention to his dental hygiene.
2- bonded tooth. A fake tooth, made of resin or porcelain can be fitted in the space and bonded to the adjacent teeth
3- wires are used to hold the crown of the avulsed tooth in place
The aim f these alternatives:
1- provide acceptable cosmetics for the child.
2- hold the space so something definite can be done in the future.
3- avoid any speech impairment.
Accidents happen. If you child loses an adult tooth, there is an option to place something in its place until we can do an implant.
Articles are written by Dr M Hajarat.