Luxation and Avulsion - Broken Teeth in Pets

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Luxation and Avulsion - Broken Teeth in Pets

Luxation refers to the dislocation of a tooth from the socket with the tooth is still attached. Avulsion refers to the complete displacement of an entire tooth from the socket.
Luxations and avulsions can occur because of accidents, falls, and, most commonly, fights. Both are emergencies and time is of the essence if you want to save the tooth.
What To Do

If your pet has lost a tooth and you know where the tooth is, follow these instructions: 

"The very best thing to do in the case of avulsion is to gently rinse (do not scrub) the tooth with saline, a balanced salt solution (SaveA-Tooth™) or milk and then stick it back in the
socket ASAP to protect the delicate periodontal ligament fibers.” 

Bring in your pet and the tooth to be seen immediately. 

Surgery can usually fix the tooth back to its normal position, but be forewarned that luxated or avulsed teeth may not heal. They can be repositioned and splinted but the tooth may require a root canal at a later date as it's blood supply has been damaged and may die. 

Sometimes extraction can have the best outcome for the pet and owner in both the short and long term. And, because anesthesia is required for surgery, there will pets with an increased risk for anesthesia complications and the risk may not be worth saving the tooth.


If the tooth is splinted in place, it will take 4-6 weeks for the tooth to reimplant in the socket. Daily antiseptic rinses around the surgery site could be recommended and antibiotics and pain medication could be prescribed; it all depends on the nature of the injury and the success of the surgery. Your pet will need to be on a soft food diet and stay away from picking up hard objects or chewing on toys, bones, or rawhides.  
After the recovery period, your pet will need to be seen again to remove the splint and have X-rays taken to confirm the reimplantation of the affected tooth. If the tooth has not properly reimplanted, it will need to be removed.

Posted Friday, February 20, 2015