What You Need To Do If A Tooth Is Knocked Out

What You Need To Do If A Tooth Is Knocked Out

Kids are prone to dental emergencies — and playing contact sports puts them at even higher risk of experiencing one, such as a tooth being knocked out.

Wearing a mouthguard is one way to lessen (if not prevent) the severity of trauma caused by contact sports. But when accident does happen, like when an adult tooth is knocked out, it’s important to know what to do.


When a tooth is knocked out, time is a critical factor in saving it. You must retrieve the tooth and get to a dentist immediately.

The following information from the Department of Health of the Government of Western Australia are perfect to equip parents with the important knowledge so they can administer dental first aid to their children. It is equally important for parents to share this information to their children so kids themselves know what to do when their tooth has been knocked out.

Remember, this is for ADULT teeth only: if a baby tooth is knocked out, still get to the dentist quickly, especially if the baby tooth still has a root on it.

  • Pick the tooth by the crown (the “chewing” end) and not by the root
  • Rinse the tooth in milk if it is dirty
  • If there is no milk available, rinse the tooth briefly in running water
  • Do not let the tooth dry
  • Put the tooth back into the socket if you can, using the other teeth as a guide.
  • Seek immediate dental care

Screen Shot 2014-03-05 at 8.22.19 AMMouthguard tooth knocked outCheck out these instruction sheets from the Australian Dental Association and the Department of Health WA site—you might want to print it out and post on your refrigerator as a visual reminder for you and your kids!

Why not laminate one or two, and pop them in your kids’ sports bags too? Give one to the team coach or manager for inclusion in the First Aid kit.