Is a Gum Injury a Dental Emergency?

Is a Gum Injury a Dental Emergency?

An optimal dental hygiene routine includes daily brushing and flossing, so it’s easy to assume your teeth are the focal point of dental care. However, if you don’t focus on your gums, you could easily lose the teeth you’ve diligently cleaned for years.

At Supertooth™, located in Bethesda, Gaithersburg, and Germantown, Maryland, we focus on keeping your entire mouth healthy. From routine checkups and cleanings to state-of-the-art orthodontics, we’ve got you covered. 

We even offer emergency dentistry for those unexpected accidents that require immediate care. Here, we discuss the many types of gum emergencies and how we treat them.

How gum injuries happen

Healthy gums are firm and stable. But like all soft tissues, your gums can sustain damage. The two most common gum injuries are passive and traumatic.

Passive gum injuries occur gradually from brushing your teeth too hard or with a stiff-bristled brush. Flossing aggressively can also cut your gums. Gum disease is another type of gum damage that occurs slowly. Although these gum problems require attention, we don’t consider them emergencies.

Traumatic gum injuries occur during an accident, like a fall or a sports injury. You can even injure your gums by using a toothpick or other sharp instrument in your mouth — one slip can slice or puncture your gum tissue. 

Cut gums bleed a lot and require immediate dental care from our team at Supertooth. 

How to spot a gum injury emergency

Cuts and tears in your gum tissue are apparent indicators to schedule an appointment, but you may also have a gum emergency that’s difficult to identify. Here are signs your gums need emergency care:

Infection

Infected gums progress quickly and can spread to the rest of your body if you don’t seek treatment. You may have a gum infection if you see pus draining from your gums or red streaks in the tissue. Pain, fever, and chills often accompany gum infections.

Inflammation

Inflamed gums are telltale signs of gum disease. But severely swollen gums after an accident or injury could mean you have an abscess that needs urgent care. 

Discoloration

Ideally, your gums look light pink and firm to the touch. If yours are bright red and squishy, you may have an infection or other underlying problem that calls for immediate care. 

What to do during a gum injury emergency

You’ll notice a lot of blood if you've cut your gums. But the blood mixes with your saliva and looks worse than it is. Still, you want to clean the wound and stem the bleeding. Rinse your mouth with a mild saltwater solution and apply direct pressure to the cut using sterile gauze. Next, call us. We can assess the damage, stitch the wound if necessary, and prevent infection.

If you have a foreign object stuck between your teeth causing a gum injury, try to remove it. But don’t use excessive force because it can cause further damage. Call us for emergency care. 

For an abscess or infection, rinse with saltwater. The condition needs professional oral care from our team of experts. We locate the infection site, drain the pus, clean the area, and prevent the infection from spreading.

Do you have a gum injury emergency? We’re here for you. Call us in Bethesda, Gaithersburg, Germantown, Maryland. 

You Might Also Enjoy...

I Have Dental Anxiety: Can You Help?

I Have Dental Anxiety: Can You Help?

Don’t let anxiety keep you from the dental care you need. With conscious sedation, you can relax in the dentist’s chair, whether you’re getting a routine teeth cleaning or a tooth extracted.

7 Ways to Instill Good Oral Health Care Habits in Your Kids

As parents, you’re always on a mission to help care for your child’s well-being, and that includes their oral health. To shed light on the importance of pediatric oral care, we’re sharing seven ways to instill good oral health care habits in your kids.
5 Dental Hygiene Mistakes to Avoid

5 Dental Hygiene Mistakes to Avoid

Ready to discover the secrets to a truly radiant smile? Explore the five dental hygiene mistakes you should steer clear of to maintain lasting oral health in our latest blog.
What to Do About Intense Tooth Pain

What to Do About Intense Tooth Pain

Pain is subjective, so it can sometimes be difficult to know what you should do if you have intense tooth pain. You may wonder if it’s worth an emergency visit to your dentist or if you should simply make an appointment and wait. Learn more here.
5 Common Tooth Brushing Mistakes to Avoid

5 Common Tooth Brushing Mistakes to Avoid

Brushing your teeth is the cornerstone of a complete oral care routine, and everyone has their own style. But improper brushing could harm your teeth. Avoid these five common mistakes to keep your smile healthy.