What to do if you lose or break a tooth and tips for prevention

As a child, tooth loss is an exciting time and a chance to meet the tooth fairy. But as an adult, tooth loss can be a traumatising experience.

If you find yourself in this situation-don’t panic. The following are a few tips that will help you to stay calm and save your smile should you lose or break an adult tooth.


  • contact your local dentist immediately
  • find the tooth!
  • handle your tooth with care
  • wrap tooth in cling wrap, plastic container or in the mouth
  • protect your smile (and body) at all times


  • handle the roots of the tooth. Handle only the chewing edge — the crown (top) portion of the tooth
  • scrape or wipe the root of the tooth to remove dirt
  • brush or clean the tooth with alcohol or peroxide
  • soak in water

If you lose a tooth:

Save any tooth that has been knocked out. Bring it to your dentist as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the less chance there is for your dentist to fix it. Hold the tooth only by the crown (chewing edge).

You can take the tooth to the dentist in one of the following ways:

  • Try to place the tooth back in your mouth where it fell out, so it is level with other teeth. Bite down gently on a gauze to help keep it in place. Be careful not to swallow the tooth.
  • If you cannot do the above step, place the tooth in a container and cover it with a small amount of saliva.
  • You can also hold the tooth between your lower lip and gum or under your tongue.

Also follow these steps:

  • Apply a cold compress on the outside of your mouth and gums to ease pain.
  • Apply direct pressure using gauze to control bleeding.
  • If your tooth is badly broken, your nerve endings may be exposed. You will need dental assistance immediately to avoid infection and pain.

If you cannot close your upper and lower teeth together, your jaw may be broken. This requires medical help right away at a dentist’s office or hospital.


Follow these tips to prevent broken or knocked out teeth:

  • Wear a mouth guard when playing any contact sport. Spa Dental can make you a custom mouthguard and can even feature your team colours and brand, find out more here.
  • Avoid fights. Protect your teeth and your body by staying out of trouble, use your mouth instead to talk your way out of a confrontation.
  • Avoid hard foods. Bones, stale bread, tough bagels and unpopped popcorn kernels are all high risk for teeth breaking and chipping so proceed with caution.
  • Practice good hygiene habits. Use healthy dental habits to prevent a tooth falling out from decay. Make sure to brush twice daily and floss at least once a day while getting regular check- ups with the team at Spa Dental to prevent tooth loss from disease.

Losing an adult tooth may feel like the end of the world, but if you stay calm, take the right steps and practice good dental habits in advance, it doesn’t have to be.

Contact Spa Dental on 02 9809 2900 or email ryde@totallysmiles.com.au to arrange your next appointment and keep on top of your oral health.