Dr. Kandl   79 South Courtland Street, Suite 1 | East Stroudsburg, PA 18301


Serving the Pocono Mountains and New Jersey
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Popcorn Kernels and Hull

Tuesday, December 20th, 2022

Do you just absolutely love your holiday popcorn?

We cannot blame you, but unfortunately popcorn has caused many extra dental visits for people. While popcorn can be tasty, sometimes it comes with a price. It may be immediate, or sometimes you might not notice for a day or two later when you find the outer hull from a kernel wedged between your teeth, or maybe even up in your gums.

“But I don’t dare eat the kernels!” Well first off – GOOD, more on that later, but those pesky hulls will break off and sometimes stay attached to the popcorn itself. The main thing to watch for here is irritation which, if not dealt with properly, could lead to more pain, soreness and a swollen or inflamed gum. If not removed, it could then lead to an infection.

So here are a few tips that we recommend:

– Grab some floss and gently press the floss against where the hull is believed to be wedged and slowly attempt to work it out.

– Try gently brushing your teeth or the area but using downwards (if on the top teeth) or upwards (if on the bottom teeth) to move / slide out the hull.

– Use lukewarm water with some salt added to it, and gently swish it in between your teeth. You can increase the force as you feel comfortable.

– If you have access to a waterpik, use that on a low setting while attempting to work the hull free.


The key here is that you want to move in a motion AWAY from the gum, the last thing you want is to wedge it in further.

If you happen to think or notice that you have an infection, give us a call right and we can discuss getting you in for an appointment.

Regarding popcorn kernels, we have seen our fair share of the kernel winning a battle over a tooth. Kernels have been known to fracture, chip, split and cause permanent damage to a tooth. We have seen crowns and fillings pop out or get dislodged due to this. Please just trust us when we say to avoid kernels!

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