After-Care Instructions Following Tooth Extraction

After-Care Instructions Following Tooth Extraction

Aug 25, 2020

Occasionally teeth may become severely damaged from illnesses, injury, infection, and decay making it essential to undergo tooth removal from a dentist. Some adults and many teenagers experience wisdom teeth removal during adulthood. Orthodontists may recommend one or two teeth removed if the adult teeth are overcrowded as a necessity of the alignment process.

Experienced dentists are qualified to perform tooth removal procedures in different situations safely. In some cases, they will perform emergency tooth extractions when a situation demands it. Dentists are careful to provide the patient with proper after-care instructions to avoid complications that may compromise their patient’s recovery.

The Tooth Extraction Procedure

The procedure for tooth extraction is either surgical or straightforward, depending on whether a visible tooth or an impacted tooth is being extracted. Let us look at both processes to understand how the dentist removes teeth.

Simple Extraction

The patient is administered local anesthesia to numb the area around the tooth to make the procedure painless. Patients do experience some pressure without any pain during the extraction. The visible tooth is loosened with an instrument called the elevator before it is extracted using forceps.

Surgical Extraction

During a surgical extraction, the patient is likely to receive both intravenous as well as local anesthesia. Intravenous anesthesia makes the patient calm and relaxed. If the patient has any medical conditions, the dentist may administer general anesthesia to make the patient unconscious during the procedure.

The general dentist will then make an incision into the gums to remove some bone from around the tooth or decide to cut the tooth in pieces before it is extracted.

Wisdom teeth removal often requires surgical extraction, especially if they are impacted and below the gum line.

After-care Following the Extraction

Bleeding from the socket from where the tooth was extracted is natural even if sutures are placed. The support staff of the dental office will provide the patient with gauze pads with instructions to gently place them onto the socket to absorb any drainage and stop bleeding to promote clotting. The gauze pad must remain in place for about 3 to 4 hours following the tooth extraction procedure. Patients are recommended not to rinse, smoke, or drink through a straw for at least 24 hours in a bid to promote clotting.

Painkillers are prescribed to the patient to ease any discomfort he or she may experience. Most patients only require mild painkillers such as acetaminophen, but some may need prescription medications. Ice can be applied to the side of the patient’s cheek to assist with pain and swelling at 10-minute intervals.

The patient is recommended to get plenty of rest for at least 24 hours following the procedure. Patients must also take it easy for a couple of days after that. They should prop their head upon pillows to minimize bleeding when resting.

Foods to Have after Tooth Extraction

  • Ortholine Family Dentistry recommends patients have soft foods like pasta, eggs, fish, yogurt, soft cooked vegetables, and pudding.
  • Acidic and spicy foods and extreme temperatures must be avoided for the first few days by patients.
  • Patients must stay away from hard and crunchy foods like popcorn, small seeds like sesame and poppy, nuts, or chips for a week following the extraction.
  • The patient must maintain a balanced diet.

The dentist in Coral Gables, FL, recommends patients not to smoke after tooth extraction. Smoking can delay the healing process and increase discomfort while encouraging bleeding and infection at the surgical site.

The Day after The Extraction

Patients can resume their regular activities after the initial 24-hour healing. They can gently rinse your mouth with a solution of saltwater and brush and floss generally by avoiding the open socket. The recovery period after a tooth extraction is typically a few days, but surgical tooth removal may require about two weeks to heal from the procedure thoroughly. Patients experiencing unusual symptoms that could be indications of an infection or something severe should contact the dentist’s office promptly. The symptoms they may experience include:

  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Fever and chills.
  • Swelling and redness.
  • Trouble breathing, chest pain, or coughing.
  • Excessive discharge.

The dentist can recommend the best method to deal with the symptoms upon being contacted and help the patient overcome the discomfort.

After the site of the extraction has healed sufficiently, the patient can discuss tooth replacement solutions with the dentist to restore their smile and prevent the shifting of other teeth.

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