How is a foreign body removed from lip
A lip foreign body is any object or substance in your lip that should not be there. Examples include pieces of teeth, splinters, shards of glass, dirt particles, and toothbrush bristles.
A foreign body usually gets into the lip by accident. For example, it may get there after you trip and fall. Foreign bodies in your lip can cause pain, swelling, infection, and discoloration (tattooing). They can also cause a type of growth called a granuloma to form around the foreign body.
How is a foreign body removed from my lip?
Dirt or debris may be removed by flushing the lip with a salt–water solution.
If you encounter any difficulty or are unsure about removing the foreign body yourself, it is always recommended to consult a healthcare professional. They can provide appropriate guidance and ensure safe and effective removal of the object.
The removal of a foreign body from the lip can typically be done with relative ease. Here’s a general guideline for how it can be accomplished:
- Assess the situation: Determine the nature of the foreign body and evaluate its size, shape, and potential risk. If it is a small and non-threatening object, it may be possible to remove it at home. However, if it is large, sharp, or causing severe pain or bleeding, it’s best to seek medical attention.
- Clean hands and equipment: Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before attempting to remove the foreign body. You may also want to gather clean, sterilized tweezers or forceps for the procedure.
- Gently inspect the area: Examine the lip to locate the foreign object. Be careful not to press or manipulate it excessively, as this could cause further discomfort or damage.
- Use tweezers or forceps: If the foreign body is easily accessible and not deeply embedded, you can use clean tweezers or forceps to grip it firmly but gently. Pull the object straight out in the same direction it entered, taking care not to twist or turn it.
- Rinse and clean: After removing the foreign body, rinse the lip with warm water to cleanse the area. You may also consider applying an antiseptic solution to prevent infection.
- Monitor for complications: Keep an eye on the area for any signs of infection, such as increased redness, swelling, pain, or discharge. If these symptoms develop, seek medical attention promptly.
- Be cautious with sharp or fragile objects: If the foreign body is sharp, such as a splinter or broken glass, or if it is fragile, like a toothpick or needle, avoid using tweezers or forceps that may cause further injury. In such cases, it is best to seek immediate medical attention to prevent complications.
- Seek medical attention: If you are unable to remove the foreign body, if it is causing excessive bleeding, severe pain, or if there are signs of infection or significant tissue damage, it is important to seek medical attention. A healthcare professional, such as a doctor or nurse, can properly evaluate the situation and perform the necessary procedures for safe and effective removal.
Foreign bodies that are deep inside your lip or that have been covered by a granuloma may be removed with a surgical procedure. If this procedure is needed:
- You may have an X-ray to identify and locate the foreign body.
- You will be given medicine to numb the area (local anesthetic).
- A small cut (incision) will be made over the foreign body.
- The foreign body and any abnormal lip tissue will be removed.
- The incision may be closed with stitches (sutures).
In addition to removing the foreign body, you may be given an antibiotic medicine or ointment and a tetanus shot.
What should I expect after a foreign body is removed from my lip?
After the foreign body is removed, your lip may be swollen and sore. If you have sutures, you may need to go back to your health care provider in about 5 days to have them removed.
How should I care for my lip after a foreign body has been removed?
- If you were prescribed an antibiotic medicine or ointment, use it as told by your health care provider. Do not stop using the antibiotic even if you start to feel better.
- Take over-the-counter and prescription medicines only as told by your health care provider.
- Follow instructions from your health care provider about eating or drinking restrictions. You may need to avoid hot or spicy food.
- If directed, apply ice to your lip:
- Put ice in a plastic bag.
- Place a towel between your lip and the bag.
- Leave the ice on for 20 minutes, 2–3 times per day.
- If directed, rinse your mouth with a salt–water mixture 3–4 times per day, or as needed. To make a salt–water mixture, completely dissolve ½–1 tsp of salt in 1 cup of warm water.
- Do not use tobacco products, including cigarettes, chewing tobacco, or e-cigarettes. If you need help quitting, ask your health care provider.
- Keep all follow-up visits as told by your health care provider. This is important.
When should I seek medical care?
Seek medical care if:
- You have redness, swelling, or pain in your lip.
- You have fluid, blood, or pus coming from your lip.
- You have a fever.