Now that the extraction is completed, here are some steps to help you with the healing process.
- PUT PRESSURE ON THE WOUNDFirst, to control any bleeding put constant pressure on the wound by biting on the gauze. Also, change the gauze every few minutes for about a couple of hours. A cold compress or ice packs can also help this process.
- STAY ON A SOFT DIETFor the first few days after the extraction you should stay on a soft diet. This decreases the chances that you will disturb the site of surgery. After a few days it is generally okay to resume your normal diet.
- TAKE PAIN MEDICINEFollowing the extraction, it is very common to experience some discomfort, normally at the site of the anesthetic or the extraction site itself. To alleviate the discomfort you should follow your dentist’s recommendation on taking an over the counter pain medication. When necessary, your dentist may decide to prescribe a stronger pain medicine to manage higher levels of pain.
- VISIT YOUR DENTISTVisit your dentist for a checkup one week after the surgery so your dentist can remove any suture and examine the wound to make sure it is healing properly, unless you have complications in which you need to visit your dentist sooner.
- DO NOT DISTURB THE SITE OF THE EXTRACTIONMake sure that you do not disturb the extraction site. This means don’t chew, rinse or brush directly on the site for at least 24 to 48 hours.
- DO NOT SPIT OR SUCK THROUGH A STRAWThis is important because using a straw often causes suction that can remove the blood clot. Loss of the blood clot causes bleeding or a painful condition called dry socket.
- DO NOT SMOKEIt is important that you do not smoke for at least 24 hours following the extraction, as smoking promotes the likelihood of bleeding and further delays the healing. Smoking could also cause dry socket.
Potential Outcome After Extracting A Tooth
A little bleeding, swelling and discomfort is normal after a tooth extraction, however, if you have any unusual bleeding beyond 4-6 hours post-operation it is important that you contact your dentist immediately or seek assistance at your local emergency room if you are unable to reach your dentist.
Sometimes you may experience discomfort when opening your mouth. This is due to muscle spasm or trismus, which usually heals on its own in a few days.