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Dental and Oral Health (Children)

Will The Tongue Heal On Its Own?

03/23/2010

Question:

My 19 month old fell and bit his tongue. He went all the way through up at the tip and in pretty deep a little further back. We were able to get the bleeding to stop but the tip of his tongue where he bit through did not lie back down against the rest of his tongue.

Consequently he now has a small tip of tongue that sticks out away from the rest of his tongue. The piece is probably 1/16th of an inch in length and it looks like it's sitting on top of his bottom teeth if he doesn't pull his tongue back. What can or should we do? Will it heal by itself?

Answer:

Thanks for the question. The tongue is remarkable in that it heals VERY quickly, particularly in a healthy young child. The chances this 'piece' would go away are small. I would recommend seeing a pediatric dentist or an oral and maxillofacial surgeon to have it evaluated for removal as needed, particularly if there is an increased chance of him 'biting' this healed piece.

Hope this helps.

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Response by:

Sarath  Thikkurissy, DDS, MS Sarath Thikkurissy, DDS, MS
Associate Professor of Pediatric Dentistry
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University