You admit that you tend to get stressed easily. You know this because you tend to bite your fingernails as a coping mechanism. During your last brushing session, you feel something “off” around your gums and decide to look in the mirror to check-“Is…is that a fingernail stuck there?!”
That’s right, you can indeed wind up with a fingernail, or even a thumbnail, lodged right in your gums. While this isn’t some freak incident that results in a random nail growing out of the gum line, nails are jagged objects that can get stuck into the soft flesh of gums just like any other object.
While nail-biters are among the most likely of people to encounter this annoyance, they are not the only demographic it can happen to.
Who Is At The Most Risk Of Getting Fingernail Stuck In Gums?
While this situation could happen to anyone, there are two main demographics that are most likely to wind up with one or more nails sticking into their gums.
Children who are still learning about how their body works and more than willing to perform “experiments” without having a full grasp of the consequences for their actions.
If you would like a specific age range for children, it tends to happen fairly regularly among children who start to lose their baby teeth; these kids sense the weakness in the tooth and will use anything, even a freshly-severed fingernail as a wedge to dislodge the tooth and potentially leave the nail sticking into the gums.
People Who Engage In Fighting
Anyone who runs afoul of an especially serious fight might wind up with one of their antagonist’s fingernails jabbed into his gums. The same could be true with any encounter involving an irate or feral housecat who decides to swipe with their claws around an open mouth.
One distinction with this group of people is that there are usually more serious injuries than a mere embedded piece of keratin.
How To Safely Remove A Fingernail Stuck In Your Gums
This advice covers all varieties of nails, be they originate from your hands or feet.
The first tip for anyone looking to dislodge one or more nails in their gums is to NOT try to dislodge it with other objects like toothpicks, pencils or any other forms of protuberance. The reason why you should avoid this is because it can actually lead to injury to the gums or even your tooth enamel during all of your fishing and prodding around.
When tackling this problem on your own, the best choice is to break out some waxed dental floss. You need to use wax because it has just enough grip to snatch onto the nail. Simply floss like normal, making sure to be gentle as you slide the filament bac and forth.
If you successfully manage to dislodge the nail, congratulations! Treat your traumatized mouth to a rinse of tepid salt water to relax the gums. This approach can also be useful for dislodging the nail. However, if your best efforts prove fruitless, do read on to the next session.
What Happens If You Can’t Get The Fingernail Out?
While you may be compelled to do the task yourself, the fingernail might become just as difficult to reach as the most irritating shard of popcorn. In short, you should consider reaching out to a dentist to solve the problem.
If you do not happen to have a regular dentist, you may be able to find relief by googling the location of the nearest urgent care facility and having someone take care of the issue from there.
Fingernails are one of many sorts of foreign objects that can find themselves lodged into a person’s gums. Whether the person is a child curious about his body or someone older who has a habit of biting his nails as a stress-relieving exercise, the fact remains that these sorts of activities elevate the chances of embedding some nails in the gums.
By resorting to waxed dental floss, warm, salty water or even consulting an oral health professional, you should be able to fix this problem with minimal risk to your teeth and gums.