Mouth Injury, Generic

Cuts and scrapes inside the mouth are common from bites and falls. They often look much worse than they really are and tend to bleed a lot. Small cuts and scrapes inside the mouth usually heal in 3 or 4 days.

HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS

  • If any of your teeth are broken, see your dentist. If baby teeth are knocked out, ask your dentist if further treatment is needed. If permanent teeth are knocked out, put them into a glass of cold milk until they can be immediately re-implanted. This should be done as soon as possible.

  • Cold drinks or popsicles will help keep swelling down and lessen discomfort.

  • After 1 day, gargle with warm salt water. Put ½ teaspoon (tsp) of salt into 8 ounces (oz) of warm water. Cuts in the mouth often look very grey or whitish and infected and that is because they are. The mouth is full of bacteria but injuries heal very well. Cuts that look quite bad cannot be noticed after a week or so.

  • For bleeding of the inner lip or tissue that connects it to the gum, press the bleeding site against the teeth or jaw for 10 minutes. Once bleeding from inside the lip stops, do not pull the lip out again or the bleeding will start again.

  • For bleeding from the tongue, squeeze or press the bleeding site with a sterile gauze or piece of clean cloth for 10 minutes.

  • Only take over-the-counter or prescription medicines for pain, discomfort, or fever as directed by your caregiver. Do not take aspirin or you may bleed more.

  • Eat a soft diet until healing is complete.

  • Avoid any salty or citrus foods. They may sting your mouth.

  • Rinse the wound with warm water immediately after meals.

SEEK MEDICAL CARE IF:

You have increasing pain or swelling.

SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • You have a large amount of bleeding that cannot be stopped.

  • You have minor bleeding that will not stop after 10 minutes of direct pressure.

  • You have severe pain.

  • You cannot swallow, or you start to drool.

  • You have a fever.

MAKE SURE YOU:

  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.