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Damaging a tooth is a serious problem that demands immediate attention. The faster you act when a tooth is chipped, cracked, or knocked loose, the greater chance you have of saving that tooth.

With that sense of urgency in mind, let’s look at what Dr. Jamine Rogers recommends you do in order to care for damaged teeth between when the damage occurs and when you’re able to see her.

Rinse with warm water

Whether you suffered a broken, chipped, or knocked-out tooth, you need to rinse your mouth out with warm water. This helps rid your mouth of dirt, debris, and other potentially harmful bacteria.

Keep the tooth in your mouth

If your tooth is knocked out, and you’re able to find it, keep it in your mouth. This will help the tooth stay alive longer while you rush to see the dentist. If you don’t feel comfortable keeping it in your mouth, keep it in a glass of milk.

Apply pressure

If you only suffered a crack or a break in your tooth, and there’s a lot of blood in your mouth, use a piece of gauze or a teabag and apply consistent pressure to the bleeding area for at least ten minutes. This will help stop the bleeding and also aid in reducing the pain.

Again, it’s important to remember that regardless of the severity of your tooth injury, you need to visit the dentist immediately after any sort of accident.