Compared to all the possible Boca Raton car accident injuries, a missing tooth might seem minor. However, a knocked-out or "avulsed" tooth qualifies as a dental emergency.
Did you know that sometimes avulsed teeth can be saved? The key is immediate treatment. If you have life-threatening injuries, your tooth won't be your main concern. But if your other injuries are minor, it is a good idea to contact your dentist as soon as possible after the accident. In the meantime, if you can locate the tooth:
- Handle the tooth carefully. Pick it up by the crown and avoid touching the root.
- If the tooth dirty, hold it by its crown and rinse with milk.
- Try to put the tooth back in its socket until you can get to the dentist.
- If the tooth won't stay in its socket, keep the tooth moist. If possible, put the tooth in a glass of milk. Another option is to hold it in your mouth. If nothing else is available, keep the tooth in a cup of water.
Your dentist will clean out the tooth socket. If there is damage to the nerves, you will be scheduled for a root canal. If the tooth can be saved, the dentist will splint the tooth into place. If the bone near the tooth is intact, the tooth will reattach in about three to four weeks. If the bone around the tooth was fractured or sustained other injuries, it can take up to eight weeks for the tooth to reattach. You will need to visit your dentist to make sure the reattachment was successful.
If your tooth can't be saved, you will need a dental implant. An implant is an artificial tooth that is placed in the jaw. The dental implant will fuse with the bone. First, you will need a root canal. Then, the jaw will have to be prepared. Your dentist may suggest a bone graft to help the implant attach to the jaw. There is often a waiting time between the bone graft and the implant. It may take six months or longer for your smile to be whole.
A dental injury is nothing to smile about. Root canals, bone grafts, and implants can add up to thousands of dollars in dental bills. What if the insurance won't pay?
Boca Raton accident attorney David Glatthorn helps Florida accident victims get fair compensation for all their injuries. To learn more, request a free copy of David's book, The Florida Accident Workbook: Tools, Tips & Tactics to Resolve Your Injury Claim, or contact David Glatthorn at 866-413-5525. The initial consultation is free.