- Injuries to the mouth can cause teeth to be pushed back into their sockets. The tooth often requires repositioning and stabilization.
- Root canal treatment is usually started within a week or two of the injury and a medication, such as calcium hydroxide, will be placed inside the tooth.
- Eventually, a permanent root canal filling will be placed in the tooth root.
- Sometimes a tooth may be pushed partially out of the socket.
- In this case, if the pulp remains healthy, then no other treatment is necessary.
- Yet, if the pulp becomes damaged or infected, root canal treatment will be required.
- If left untreated, many different complications can arise.
- These complications can include but are not limited to: Infection of the tooth, root system or surrounding tissue, inadequate hygiene due to an inability to properly clean the dislodged tooth and the gums, and loss of the tooth.
- If an injury causes a tooth to be completely knocked out of your mouth, it is important that you are treated immediately!
- If this happens to you, keep the tooth moist with saline solution if available. If possible, put it back into the socket.
- A tooth can be saved if it remains moist.
- You can even put the tooth in milk or a glass of water (add a pinch of salt.) Your Endodontist may start root canal treatment based upon the stage of root development.
- The length of time the tooth was out of your mouth and the way the tooth was stored, may influence the type of treatment you receive.
Injuries in children
- An injured immature tooth may need one of the following procedures to improve the chances of saving the tooth:
- This procedure encourages the root to continue development as the pulp is healed. Soft tissue is covered with medication to encourage growth.
- The tip of the root (apex) will continue to close as the child gets older. In turn, the walls of the root canal will thicken.
- If the pulp heals, no additional treatment will be necessary.
- The more mature the root becomes, the better the chance to save the tooth.
- In this case, the unhealthy pulp is removed. Our endodontists would place a medication and/or material into the root to help a hard tissue form near the root tip.
- This hardened tissue provides a barrier for the root canal filling.
- At this point, the root canal walls will not continue to develop, making the tooth susceptible to fractures.
- It is important to have the tooth properly restored by your restorative dentist.