No More Natural Teeth: Deciding Between Implants and Dentures

What to Do If You've Cut Your Gums

by Jeremiah Barnett

Any kind of injury to the gums hurts, so if yours have gotten cut, chances are you're experiencing pain and anxiety. If this has happened to you, you should follow these steps to care for your gums until they heal.

Slow the Bleeding

Your first step should be to slow down and stop the bleeding from your gums. Since gums have ample blood flow, they tend to bleed profusely, even from small cuts. 

How you complete this step partially depends on what you have available to you. If you have clean gauze, pack the gum area with the gauze so that your lip keeps it pressed firmly against the gum line. This is what dentists use following oral surgeries, so it should do a good job.

If you don't have gauze, try using an unused teabag. The tannic acid found in black and green tea helps to slow down blood flow, and the size of a teabag is typically easy to hold in place with your lip or tongue. To use a teabag, simply dampen the bag beforehand and then tuck it against the bleeding gum, and hold it there.

Call the Dentist

If at all possible, you should immediately head to a dentist's office for care. If your regular dentist isn't open, go to an emergency dentist instead. An injured gum will not only bleed, but it will also be susceptible to infection. The gums are responsible for protecting the more susceptible parts of your teeth, too, so the root or pulp of your tooth could potentially suffer an infection if the wound isn't treated. In any case, don't put off visiting a dentist, even if you get the blood to stop flowing. This could put your oral health at risk and result in a much bigger problem down the road.

Avoid Eating

If at all possible, don't eat while your gums are injured. In addition to introducing more bacteria to the site, biting and chewing makes the gums stretch and flex slightly, which could open up a cut further. If you need sustenance prior to seeing a dentist, try soft or drinkable foods, like smoothies, soup broth, or apple sauce. As a rule of thumb, if you can't simply swallow the food without chewing, avoid it for now.

Thankfully, emergency dentist offices like those of Bradley T Piotrowski DDS MSD LLC are open around the clock for problems like these. Once your bleeding is under control, seek medical care right away.