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Infant tongue injury

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My 2 y/o bit a hole through her tounge will it heal on its own or will she need stitches hole is about .25 inches

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replied December 7th, 2008
General Q and A Answer A5047

Given your description of the tongue hole, it seems that your little daughter might be experiencing a minor tongue injury. A tongue cut usually bleeds heavily, but since you did not report excessive bleeding, it could be assumed that the bleeding was not that heavy. If the cut does not shift/gap when the tongue is being moved, it usually does not require stitches. If the opposite happens-visiting an ER doctor and applying stitches might be needed. The “hole” area should be held pressed against the cheek. Rinse her mouth with a mild solution of hydrogen peroxide or an OTC oral antiseptic, for infection prevention, at least 4-5 times daily. Keep your child on a soft diet for 4-5 days, to help the healing process. The tongue has an amazing healing capacity, so it should normally heal quite quickly. However, bad breath is expected. Continue with the teeth-brushing and use a mild mouth wash to clean the mouth and tongue area. Also, what is very important is to continue checking on redness and pus coming out of the injured area, which might require addition of an oral antibiotic to the treatment by your family doctor.

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