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How to Remove a Popcorn Kernel Stuck in Your Gum

How to Remove a Popcorn Kernel Stuck in Your Gum
December 1, 2022

Dental emergencies are very common in dentistry because they often occur due to things in your daily life. Something as small as enjoying a bag of popcorn can be why you need urgent care from a dentist in Concord, CA. It is always great to have a dentist you can reach conveniently for such oral problems. Besides, how you handle your oral health at home before you visit a dental office makes a difference.

The Right Way to Remove a Popcorn Kernel from Your Gum

When you notice a popcorn kernel stuck in your gums, the most probable thing you will do is try to poke at it with a sharp object. The next most common thing is to search on the internet for tips on how to remove a popcorn kernel from your gums. Unfortunately, calling a dentist at Concord Dental & Orthodontics may not be anywhere at the top of your list, even though it is the best solution. Contacting a dentist ensures you have the right frame of mind, information, and tools to deal with the present situation.

Aside from calling your dentist, the right way to remove a popcorn shell stuck in gum is by using dental floss. Generally, dental floss is designed to fit between teeth and remove food residue from the gum line. Therefore, it is the best solution to target the popcorn shell stuck in the gum.

Approach the removal process cautiously, applying gentleness when moving the dental floss between your teeth. The last thing you need is a laceration on your gums because of mishandling the dental floss. Besides, if you are not careful, you risk pushing the popcorn kernel further into your gums, causing more dental pain, bleeding, and swelling.

After using dental floss, you can rinse your mouth with salt water to kill bacteria. Brushing your teeth will also help remove any other popcorn residues in other parts of your oral cavity. Brush at a 45-degree angle near the gum line to target the popcorn kernel instead of randomly brushing your tooth surface.

The Dangers of Not Removing a Popcorn Kernel from Your Gums

A common notion with dental situations such as popcorn kernels between teeth is neglecting it to see if it resolves on its own. In some cases, you may be lucky to have the kernel dislodged without intervention. However, you cannot always rely on luck to care for your dental health. Besides, there are dangers to leaving the popcorn kernel in your gums, including the following:

  1. Severe irritation and inflammation of the gums – although it may start like minute swelling, the inflammation and irritation can worsen if you do not remove the popcorn hull.
  2. Gum pain – the longer you keep using your mouth without removing the popcorn hull from your gums, the worse your pain gets. The pain may radiate from your gums, but it can start feeling like your jaw and teeth ache too.
  3. Gum abscesses – are potentially-dangerous pockets of pus that form on your gums due to a buildup of bacteria stewing an infection.
  4. Drainage from your gums – can feature blood, pus, or a combination of these fluids from the affected part of your gums.
  5. Receding gums – when gums are infected or damaged, they can start pulling away from your teeth. The consequences of receding gums are far worse than other symptoms, including premature tooth loss.

How to Prevent a Popcorn Kernel from Sticking in Your Gum

Yes, you can prevent popcorn kernels from sticking in your gums. The most obvious solution is to avoid eating popcorn and other hard foods. However, if that is a steep ask for you, consider the following factors for preventing such accidents:

  1. Drink water frequently as you snack on your popcorn. The water rinses your mouth, disallowing hulls from getting caught between your teeth.
  2. Have a toothpick nearby to pick out the small pieces quickly before they get stuck.
  3. Only eat popped corn – leave the hard kernels as they can even crack or break your teeth.
  4. Chew some sugar-free gum to help dislodge some of the pieces on your teeth.
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