Just had an extraction? Tips to follow afterwards

Have you been to your dental team to be told that you need to have a few teeth taken out? Don’t panic!

Dental extractions are common procedures performed by dentists to remove a tooth or a part of it and the reason for needing an extraction can vary greatly.

You may have had a rotten tooth that could not be restored, or you may be looking into orthodontic care and need to make some room.

After an extraction, it is crucial to take good care of the extraction site to promote healing and prevent complications.

So, with that in mind, here are 5 care tips to follow after you have had a tooth out.

Rest and take it easy

After a dental extraction it is essential to rest and avoid any strenuous work or hobbies for at least 24 hours. Excessive physical activity can increase blood pressure, leading to bleeding from the extraction site.

While you shouldn’t be aiming to lie in bed, try to stay as stationary as possible until a blood clot forms over the extraction site, which can take a few days.

If you have discomfort around the area that is excruciating and no clot is forming, you need to see your dentist Ryde, as you may have a dry socket. Some discomfort is normal after an extraction, but if the pain is severe or does not improve, the patient should seek dental attention.

Apply ice packs

Applying ice packs to your cheeks for 10 to 20 minutes at a time can help reduce swelling and pain. Try to use an ice pack that is wrapped in a towel. Do not apply the pack directly to the skin, as this can cause ice burns.

Avoid using straws

Remember that blood clot from earlier? To keep it in place, you will need to avoid using straws. Using straws can create suction in your mouth, and this can dislodge the blood clot that forms in the extraction site. This can lead to the aforementioned painful condition called dry socket, where the bone is exposed and becomes inflamed. Therefore, avoid using straws for at least 24 hours after the extraction.

Eat soft foods

Eating soft foods such as soup, yoghurt, and mashed potatoes can help you get the nutrition you need while also avoiding irritation at the extraction site. Avoid consuming hard, crunchy, or spicy foods that can scratch or irritate the area.

If you feel at any stage that the extraction site is becoming irritated, or is causing excessive discomfort, seek help from your dental team.

Keep the extraction site clean

Keeping the extraction site clean is crucial for preventing infection. So, aim to rinse your mouth gently with warm salt water several times a day, starting the day after the extraction. Do not brush your teeth or rinse your mouth vigorously for the first 24 hours after the extraction, as this can dislodge that all-important blood clot.

Bonus tip!

As all dental extractions differ, you should seek to follow your dental team’s instructions. They will provide you with a sheet with detailed instructions on how to care for the extraction site after the procedure. These instructions may include the use of pain medication, antibiotics, or special mouthwash. It is essential to follow these instructions carefully to promote healing and prevent complications.

Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.

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