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How to treat soft tissue injuries

Mouth injuries in children usually look much worse than they really are.

  • Try to stay calm — chances are you’re dealing with a minor injury.
  • The calmer you are, the faster your child will calm down.
  • There are so many blood vessels in the areas near the head and neck, that even a tiny cut on your little one’s lip or tongue can cause a lot of bleeding. Which can even make it difficult for you to figure out exactly where all that blood is coming from.

With these steps you will be able to treat and heal the mouth injury yourself:

  • Stop the bleeding.

If the injury is on the outer lip or tongue, apply gentle pressure to the area with a piece of gauze or a clean cloth for as long as possible. (Run it under cool water first if you can)

If the inner lip is bleeding (upper or lower), gently press the part of that lip against your child’s teeth (or gums) for as long as you can (preferably 10 min). Avoid pulling the lip after that to check out the damage — that will start the bleeding again.

  • Distract as you treat.

If there were ever a time to put on their favorite show on Netflix or pull out your phone as a distraction, this would be it. The longer your child sits (relatively) still for treatment, the sooner the bleeding will stop.

  • Keep it cool.

To numb the pain and reduce the swelling, apply an ice pack (or a bag of frozen veggies) to the area. If your child’s old enough to handle one, sucking on a Popsicle may also soothe a minor mouth injury.

  • Provide pain relief, as needed.

Most mouth injuries don’t keep a child down for long, but if your little one seems to be in a lot of discomfort, a dose of  ibuprofen (if he’s over age six months) should ease the pain. We also recommend Canker Rid as a great solution to treat canker sores. 

  • Feed with care.

While the injury is healing, keep your childs diet on the bland side (anything acidic — like orange juice — or salty may sting).  Popsicles are great as a soothing treat.  Also, rinsing with warm water after meals, will keep food from accumulating in a mouth cut.

  • Give it a few days.

Minor mouth injuries in children usually heal in three to four days.


Written By: Dr. Ngo 

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