Tooth Extraction: Do’s and Don’ts After Surgery

Tooth Extraction Herndon, VA

Proper aftercare following tooth extraction surgery is very important. It is critical to closely follow your dentist’s aftercare instructions. This will help to speed recovery, minimize discomfort, and avoid any complications. Read on to learn more about tooth extraction aftercare.

Tooth extraction

Dentists may recommend a tooth extraction due to severe decay, irreparable damage from trauma, infection, or disease. In some cases, the procedure can help to make space for tooth realignment with an orthodontic appliance. Regardless of the reason for tooth extraction, taking care of the mouth is important. It will promote healing and minimize the risk of complications after the procedure.

Procedure

Before removal during a simple extraction, the area around where the tooth will be removed will be numbed using local anesthetic. But during a surgical extraction, the dentist or oral surgeon may administer a general anesthetic, which will cause the patient to sleep through the procedure. Once the tooth has been extracted, a blood clot often forms in the tooth socket. The provider will pack a gauze pad into the socket and then ask the patient to bite down on it. This will help to stop the bleeding.

Aftercare

Following an extraction, the patient should go home to recover. Recovery usually takes a couple of days. There are particular things people can do to help lessen discomfort, speed recovery, and reduce the risk of infection. Patients should bite firmly but gently on the gauze pad placed by the dentist. This is vital because it will help reduce bleeding and allow a clot to form in the socket where the tooth used to be.

Gauze pads should be left in place for a few hours after the extraction. But they should be changed before they become soaked with blood. The dentist may prescribe medicine to manage pain and inflammation or to prevent infection. The medicine should only be used as directed. To keep down swelling, an ice bag or cold, moist cloth should be applied to the face after the procedure. Patients should follow their dentist’s instructions on how long and how often to use a cold compress.

Individuals should rest and not engage in any strenuous activities for at least 24 hours after the extraction. This will not only limit bleeding but also allow clotting. Patients should avoid smoking, rinsing the mouth vigorously, and using a straw for 24 hours. These activities can slow healing. To avoid dislodging the clot, people should avoid rinsing or spitting forcefully.

Cleaning your mouth

After your tooth extraction surgery, it is important to keep the area clean and prevent infection. You should continue to brush and floss your teeth and also brush your tongue. Be as gentle as possible and avoid the extraction site to help prevent infection. Eating soft, nutritious foods is also ideal especially during the first few days of recovery. You should follow your dentist’s recommendations carefully before and after the dental procedure. Talk to your dentist as soon as you can if you have any questions about the procedure or problems.

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