What to Do If Your Child Breaks Or Loses A Tooth

As one of Duluth’s favorite family dentistries for over 20 years, we have heard almost every story while helping kids who have chipped, cracked, or knocked out one of their teeth. After fixing their child’s teeth many parents have asked what they should do in the case that it happens again. This blog is dedicated to providing the need-to-know information on best practices on what to do if your child breaks or loses a tooth. Throughout this blog, our team of dental experts breaks down three scenarios. The first is what to do when a child chips or breaks their tooth. The second and third scenarios are when a child loses an adult tooth. For more information make sure to contact our dental team as soon as possible for the best results. 

Scenario One – Steps to take if a child chips or breaks a tooth

If your child chips or breaks a tooth use this five-step process to get it fixed as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the smaller the chance they can fix it. 

  1. Make sure your child is conscious and the chip/tooth is found
  2. Contact your child’s dentist as soon as you can
  3. Notify the dentist what happened and set up the soonest appointment 
  4. Put an icepack on the face to reduce swelling
  5. If possible, bring the tooth fragment with you to the dentist 

If your child loses an adult tooth there are two tactics you can use Tactic 1 should be your first try and tactic 2 should be used only when tactic 1 fails.

My Child Knocked Out a Tooth! Now What? | 376 Dental Studio
Child with a missing tooth | what to do if your child breaks or loses a tooth

Scenario Two – Steps to take if a child loses an adult tooth (tactic 1)

A knocked-out tooth is an emergency situation. If you don’t get help soon, it will be impossible to save the tooth, and the socket can become badly infected. By taking quick action, you can save both the tooth and the socket.

Here’s what you need to do if your child loses a tooth:

  1. Find the missing tooth
  2. Pick it up by the crown, not the fleshy root. If the root looks dirty, give it a soft quick rinse with a sterile saline solution, milk, or saliva. Don’t scrub it or touch it — you could wind up losing vital tissue.
  3. Have your child open their mouth
  4. Put the tooth back in its socket. Then hold it in place with gauze or a clean washcloth until you get to a dentist.
  5. If the tooth won’t go back in place, put it in a glass of milk or sterile saline solution. Don’t put it in water. (Water doesn’t preserve the tooth as well, which can make it more difficult to reimplant.) You can also carry the tooth tucked between your gum and cheek until you get to the hospital or dentist’s office.
  6. Get to a dentist immediately. (And don’t forget to bring the tooth!)
  7. If a dentist isn’t available, go to a hospital emergency room.

Scenario Three – Steps to take if a child loses an adult tooth (tactic 2)

If tactic one doesn’t work it’s time to go to tactic two. Tactic two is to preserve the tooth until you can get it to a dentist to have it fixed. This tactic is extremely time sensitive so contacting your dentist should be one of your first priorities.

  1. Find the missing tooth
  2. Check for more damage is your child’s mouth (more cracks, missing teeth)
  3. Contact your child’s dentist 
  4. place the child’s tooth in a clean container and keep it wet until you can get to a dentist. The best liquid to put a tooth in is a special tooth-preservation product called Save-A-Tooth. If you’re unable to get a hold of this product, use cold milk, saliva, a saline solution, or water. 
  5. Seek dental care immediately


If a baby tooth is knocked out, never try to replant it, as it could cause damage to the permanent tooth behind it and the tooth. Instead, schedule a visit to your pediatric dentist as soon as possible and bring the tooth with you if you are able. 

Thank you for reading our blog on what you should do if your child breaks or loses a tooth. Make sure to reach out to our team if you have any questions or concerns.

Traumatic Teeth Injuries Atlanta GA

Who is Woodland Family Dental?

Woodland Family Dental is one of Duluth, Minnesota’s top family dental offices. with over 50 five-star reviews on Google and Facebook, our team makes it our mission to provide the best dentistry for anyone that needs it. Our experienced team of dentists offers a wide array of dental services including general cleanings, cosmetic dentistry, and dental implants. Woodland Family Dental is here to help you with your dental needs. Not to mention our great location on Miller Trunk Highway right next to the mall in Duluth, Minnesota. Woodland Family Dental cares about helping our patients and accepts almost all insurances. Set up an appointment today and see why so many families love us. Also, don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date, get more tips, and learn about what our team is up to.

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