5 Things to Take Care Of After Tooth Extraction Surgery
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5 Things to Take Care Of After Tooth Extraction Surgery

Tooth loss is a common concern across the globe. According to research, more than 100 million Americans are missing at least one of their natural teeth. Tooth decay, gum disease, and dental trauma are key reasons behind tooth loss. Your dentist can also recommend tooth extractions if you have an impacted wisdom tooth or crowded teeth.

If you have a severely damaged tooth that has broken below the gum line, or you’re getting an impacted tooth removed, your dentist might recommend surgical extraction. Extractions can vary in their complexity.  Teeth with advanced gum disease may be loose and be easy to remove.  On the other hand, badly decayed teeth or impacted teeth may require removal of bone and/or breaking the tooth into pieces to remove.

Surgical Tooth Extraction

You’ll be numbed to prevent pain and discomfort during the extraction.  The surgeon may make an incision through the gums and bone tissues surrounding the tooth. If needed, they may remove some bone or cut the tooth into pieces for easy removal.

When needed, you’ll get stitches to allow the surgical site to heal. The surgeon will give you a gauze pad to bite on to control the bleeding. It is also normal to experience minor swelling and discomfort after the extraction. Your surgeon or dentist will give you a few tips to promote quick recovery.

5 Tooth Extraction Aftercare Tips

Below are essential tips for speedy and easy recovery.

  • Rest adequately.

Following any surgical procedure, avoiding strenuous activities and tasks is essential. Lifting heavy objects and bending over can increase your heart rate and blood pressure in your head, leading to increased bleeding and discomfort at the surgical site.

Resting adequately for the next 48 – 72 hours while keeping your head elevated on a soft pillow allows natural blood flow from the extraction area, reducing bleeding, swelling, and discomfort. It facilitates faster healing.

  • Take medication as directed.

Following a tooth extraction, it’s normal to experience discomfort and inflammation at the extraction site. Fortunately, your dentist will prescribe pain and antibiotic medications to relieve the symptoms and prevent infections. You must take medicine as prescribed by the dentist. Be sure to consult your dentist if you need to take over-the-counter medications.

  • Take a soft diet.

Eating after tooth extraction provides your body with essential vitamins and minerals that accelerates cell growth and wound healing. Remember, you shouldn’t eat or drink anything hot before the anesthesia wears off. Doing so can cause you to burn or hurt your mouth.

Eating hard, crunchy, spicy, hot, or chewy foods can also disturb or irritate the surgical site, worsening your symptoms and delaying normal healing. Soft foods allow you to get the necessary nutrients without disturbing the surgical site. For the next few days, take soft food items like fruit smoothies, mashed avocado, oatmeal, scrambled eggs, soft fish, yogurt and lukewarm soup.

  • Maintain good oral hygiene.

Good oral hygiene after surgical extraction is essential to prevent infection around the extraction site. While you can’t brush or floss the extraction site for the next 24 – 48 hours, you can rinse your mouth gently with salt water solution after 12 – 24 hours. Be sure to avoid alcohol-based mouthwashes as they can irritate the extraction site called socket.

  • Cold therapy

You can use a cold compress or ice pack to manage pain and swelling around the surgical site and facilitate faster recovery. Cold therapy slows blood flow and pressure in the surgical site, decreasing discomfort and inflammation.

Summary Tips

In general, here are things you can do and shouldn’t to promote faster healing after surgical extraction:

  • Bite on the gauze gently until bleeding stops. You can change as needed.
  • Rest adequately for at least 48 hours.
  • Sleep with your head elevated.
  • Take medication as prescribed. Avoid aspirin.
  • Avoid hot, crunchy, hard, or chewy food.
  • Avoid touching or disturbing the surgical site with your tongue or finger.
  • Don’t eat or drink until the anesthesia wears off.
  • Avoid chewing at the side of the extraction area.
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol consumption for at least 48 hours after the extraction.
  • Avoid spitting, rinsing, or sucking for at least 24 hours.
  • Avoid vigorous activities like blowing your nose or sneezing.
  • Contact your dentist immediately if your symptoms worsen or persist more than usual.

Schedule an Appointment Today

Do you need tooth extractions in New Westminster? Or perhaps you need more recovery tips for recovering quickly after tooth removal? Contact Asante Dental Centre to speak with our dentist in New Westminster, BC.