Posted .

Chances are pretty good there’s been more than once you accidentally bit your lip while you were eating, or perhaps chewing gum. While these accidental nips can give you a good yikes of pain, it’s pretty rare for them to cause any significant harm.

There are rare instances when an accident, blow to the face, or sports injury can result in a significant lip injury. For these times Dr. Bruce Westover offers a few essential first aid tips for taking care of an injured lip.

Please note that a severe lip injury, with excessive bleeding, or if you’ve somehow bitten through your lip, it probably warrants a visit to the emergency room.

It’s important to get a clear understanding of how significant your lip injury is. If there is any blood on your lip, you can use a warm, wet washcloth to gently wipe it away. If you have blood or debris in your mouth you can rinse it away with lukewarm salt water.

If your lip starts to swell you can try holding a cold compress on the area for 15 to 20 minutes at a time. A cold compress can be made quickly, by placing crushed ice in a zip-top bag wrapped in a washcloth or tea towel.

If your injured lip continues to bleed you can try to control the bleeding by holding some sterile gauze to the wound. If the bleeding hasn’t stopped after 20 minutes, it usually means the wound will require further treatment and warrants a trip to the emergency room or an urgent care facility.

If you would like more tips on how to handle a lip injury or other oral emergency, you can call Dr. Bruce Westover at 928-634-5566 to set up a consultation appointment.