Blog
I Really Sliced My Tongue

It is not uncommon to bite your tongue a little bit from time to time. We just need to protect it for a day or two until the soreness is gone. But if you really slice your tongue, you need to take action.bite your tongue - paid - Depositphotos 82544376 s-2019

By “slice your tongue” we mean a deep cut in the surface or biting off (or nearly so) a piece of your tongue. These injuries typically hurt and bleed. An injury of this sort needs medical attention.

Common Circumstance of Sliced Tongues

  • A slip while eating
  • Jarring while playing sports
  • Being under dental anesthesia
  • Falling or being in a car crash
  • While sleeping
  • During a seizure
  • Self-harm

What to do Immediately

  1. Wash your hands to avoid transmission of bacteria
  2. Rinse with clear (clean) water
  3. Cover the cut with a gauze pad or a clean cloth
  4. Press on the injury to stop the bleeding
  5. When it stops bleeding, suck on an ice cube to reduce the swelling and the pain
  6. Watch for indications of infection (pus, fever, swelling)

Note: don’t tilt your head back. This will cause blood to be swallowed.

When you need additional treatment. It is important that you seek treatment as soon as possible, so that you have the best treatment options available. You should go to a hospital emergency room or an urgent care center if

  • The bleeding does not stop
  • The bleeding stops and then starts again
  • You see a big open cut
  • A piece of your tongue has been cut off completely or partially (take the lost piece if possible. In some cases, the tongue can be reconstructed)
  • If you are in great pain and the pain is not abated by ibuprofen or acetaminophen
  • You have trouble swallowing, opening (or closing) your mouth, or breathing
  • The injury is caused by some object that may be dirty and cause infection

Treatment will involve cleaning the cut and removing any debris or other objects. The doctor will also examine the area to identify any indications of infection or nerve damage. The doctor will likely close the cut with stitches or sutures. In some cases, antibiotics will be prescribed to prevent or treat infection. Then follow all of the doctor’s instructions for allowing the injury to heal.

Some cases of tongue injuries can be prevented by wearing a seatbelt while riding in a car or truck and by wearing a well-fitting mouthguard when playing sports.

 
Asthma and Your Oral Health

People with asthma (approximately 235 million people worldwide) are significantly more likely to develop gum disease according to a study reported in the Journal of Periodontology.  asthma inhaler - paid - Depositphotos 350926360 s-2019

 

Asthma is marked by narrowing and inflammation of your airways, causing shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing, and tightness in the chest. Inhaled medication and breathing through your mouth because the nasal airways are blocked or restricted often cause dry mouth. When untreated, dry mouth causes plaque development, tooth decay, and gum disease.

 

It is vital that everyone with asthma focus particularly on oral health. You may need to brush your teeth after using an inhaler (rather than just rinsing). You will need to drink water throughout the day to treat the dryness and stimulate or substitute for saliva. You may need to take a medication for dry mouth. Finally, you may need to speak with your doctor about inhalers that are easiest for you to use, or ask about an adaptive device to use with your inhaler that helps to channel the medication to the back of your throat rather than the sides or roof of your mouth.

 

Just as you need to care for your respiratory system and your airways, protecting your smile and your oral health will also need special attention. Work with your dentist to develop a strong dental hygiene protocol that is right for you.

 
Why do We Have a Hard Palate and a Soft Palate?

What is the difference between the two and what is the function of each?

The hard palate and the soft palate have different functions but together form the roof of your mouth.  anatomy of mouth SM - paid - shutterstock 220669927

The hard palate is the bony part that is the front two-thirds of the roof of your mouth. It holds your teeth (and gums) and creates a chamber where your tongue can move. Thus, it is important to your speech.

The soft palate is the soft one-third of the roof of your mouth, made of fleshy soft tissues and muscles and ends with the uvula (the dangling bit in the back of your throat). Their primary function is to allow you to swallow and direct the food to your esophagus rather than into your nose and your respiratory tract. It is critical, as well, in directing air and sound into and through your mouth to make the appropriate sounds when you speak. The soft palate also plays a role in breathing as a wall between the esophagus and your respiratory tract. This allows you to eat and breathe at the same time. It will not, however, allow you to swallow and breathe simultaneously.

 
Why do We Have a Hard Palate and a Soft Palate?

What is the difference between the two and what is the function of each?

The hard palate and the soft palate have different functions but together form the roof of your mouth.  anatomy of mouth SM - paid - shutterstock 220669927

The hard palate is the bony part that is the front two-thirds of the roof of your mouth. It holds your teeth (and gums) and creates a chamber where your tongue can move. Thus, it is important to your speech.

The soft palate is the soft one-third of the roof of your mouth, made of fleshy soft tissues and muscles and ends with the uvula (the dangling bit in the back of your throat). Their primary function is to allow you to swallow and direct the food to your esophagus rather than into your nose and your respiratory tract. It is critical, as well, in directing air and sound into and through your mouth to make the appropriate sounds when you speak. The soft palate also plays a role in breathing as a wall between the esophagus and your respiratory tract. This allows you to eat and breathe at the same time. It will not, however, allow you to swallow and breathe simultaneously.

 
Your Amalgam Fillings Are Fine

On Sept 24, the FDA issued a statement that dental amalgam fillings are "not harmful to the general population, and treatment options should be thoroughly discussed by the patient and dentist."   amalgam filling - paid - Depositphotos 14039145 s-2019

 

The FDA statement also said that "certain groups may be at greater risk for potential negative effects from exposure to mercury." In this context FDA also noted "there is little to no information" known about the effects dental amalgam may have on these specific groups. Finally, they "stressed there 'was no new scientific evidence cited as part of the FDA recommendation.'"

 

There have been reactions to the FDA statement. Notably, a response from the American Dental Association, the organization "reaffirmed its position . . . that dental amalgam is a durable, safe and effective restorative material." They noted agreement with the FDA that "existing amalgam fillings in good condition should not be removed or replaced unless it is considered medically necessary."

 

At CompleteDentalCare in Salem,VA, we are always ready to answer your questions about filling materials and other matters. Further, it is our custom to discuss treatment options of all sorts with our patients. Determining the best filling material for any tooth should be based upon "size and location of the cavity, patient history, cosmetic concerns and cost."

The ADA statement can be found at https://www.ada.org/en/publications/ada-news/20200-archive/september/ada-reaffirms-that-dental-amalgam-is-durable-safe-effective-restorative-material

 
«StartPrev12345678910NextEnd»

Page 4 of 27