TOOTH EXTRACTION AFTER CARE: DOS AND DON'TS
Teeth are composed of enamel, the hardest part of our body. Our teeth enable us to do many vital tasks, including eating and speaking. While growing up, our temporary teeth fall, and the secondary teeth replace them. These secondary or permanent teeth are meant to last for a lifetime. However, there can be situations where one may be required to have a tooth removed. A tooth that is damaged due to decay should be removed. Else it may harm the adjacent teeth and put your overall dental health at risk. This process of removal of a tooth is known as tooth extraction.
Tooth extraction is the removal of a tooth by a dentist or an oral surgeon. It is a quick procedure performed with the patient under general anesthesia, local anesthesia, intravenous anesthesia, or a combination of all. The removal of visible tooth structure is a simple extraction. But the tooth that is below the surface, damaged, or broken requires an elaborate procedure.
Tooth extraction might be necessary to ensure your oral well-being. But we can't overlook how important is aftercare. With proper aftercare post tooth extraction, you can manage your pain and discomfort. Following the right aftercare instructions also speeds up your healing process and ensures your oral well-being. So, if you have undergone tooth extraction recently or are planning to get your tooth extracted, here are the things that you should remember.
Post your tooth extraction, here are certain things that you should do to ensure proper healing:
Use A Gauze
Gauze is a small fabric used to cushion and guard the wound. Your dentist may suggest you use gauze to facilitate blood clotting. After the tooth extraction, you can expect minor bleeding. You shouldn't worry about this bleeding as it usually stops within two hours after the surgery. It is advisable to keep the gauze on the surgical site with some pressure or biting force for 40-45 minutes.
When using a gauze, you must place it directly on the site. The firm biting pressure for 40-45 minutes will stop the bleeding. If the bleeding still persists, you can replace it with a new piece of gauze.
In some cases, the gauze might not be able to stop bleeding. In such a situation, you can use a moistened tea bag on the site after your third attempt at using gauze. Biting on a tea bag will stop the bleeding as tea contains tannic acid that helps blood clotting.
Eat Soft Foods
Not being careful about the food that you eat after tooth extraction, may irritate your wound. It can also dislodge a blood clot resulting in bleeding. Hence, for the first 24-48 hours, you should only eat soft food items. Stick with foods such as mashed potatoes, yogurt, cottage cheese, soup, scrambled eggs, etc. You should also avoid chewing from the side of tooth extraction. It is also advisable that you stick to having ice cream or sipping cold fluids and juices for the first day. Don't drink using a straw for at least one week after the surgery.
Your dentist may suggest you resume your regular diet as soon as you feel good. But make sure that you avoid any kind of carbonated drinks for 2-3 days and crunchy food items such as chips and popcorn for at least two weeks. Also, make sure that you drink plenty of water and stay hydrated throughout your healing process.
Maintain Oral Hygiene
It is very important to take care of your oral hygiene even after tooth extraction. However, you should take extreme care while practicing your dental care routine, or else you may dislodge the blood clot.
You can start rinsing your mouth only after a day after the tooth extraction. Use some warm salt water to gently rinse your mouth after meals and before going to bed at night, for one week. Don't use mouthwashes that contain alcohol. Otherwise, it may burn and cause you discomfort.
While brushing your teeth, make sure to use a toothbrush with soft bristles. Don't bring the toothbrush near the surgical area and be very gentle. You should avoid any kind of force while spitting and rinsing your mouth.
Even if some food gets clogged at the tooth extraction site, don't use a toothbrush or waterpik to remove it. Contact your dentist and wait till you get further instructions.
Your doctor may prescribe medicines or advise you to take over-the-counter medications to manage pain. It is necessary to take narcotic pain medicines after regular intervals for the first 24 hours. You must remember that narcotics can make you feel drowsy. So avoid activities like driving, swimming, or operating any machines. Also, the consumption of alcoholic beverages.
You may also have to take antibiotics to prevent any possible infections. For proper healing and to reduce the chances of complications, make sure to take the prescribed antibiotics.
Don't quit halfway through the medications. Whether it's pain medication or antibiotics prescribed by your doctor, take all the medications, at the scheduled time.If you can't swallow your pills or experience diarrhea or nausea, it's best to consult with your doctor.
After your tooth extraction, your body needs time to heal. Therefore, you must limit your activity and take proper rest so that you can recover properly. You should rest completely for at least 24 hours and avoid any kind of severe activities for at least 48 hours after the procedure.
When you are no longer taking the pain medicines, and starting to feel better, you may resume your normal activities. But it is advisable to avoid being too harsh and go easy at the beginning.
Initially, you can start resuming your activities with light exercises and increase them slowly over time. It may take you a few weeks to get back to your normal routine. If you hurry up, it may result in further complications.
While sleeping, maintaining your head elevated on an extra pillow will help the blood clot and enable healing. You must always follow the instructions of your doctors as closely as possible. With plenty of rest, and proper medications you will be able to recover well to resume your activities.
Most patients who undergo tooth extraction may experience swelling and pain in the mouth. It varies from person to person and can be mild or severe. Usually, the swelling increases for the first 24-48 hours after the surgery before it starts to get better. Use ice packs to get relief from pain and swelling.
You can apply an ice pack to your face or cheek that is close to the site of tooth extraction. Keep it for 15-20 minutes and then take it off for 10 minutes. You can do this at regular intervals of time, especially for the first 24 hours after the surgery. To minimize swelling, sleep with your head elevated above the level of your heart. Two days after the surgery you can switch to moist heat instead of ice packs. In this way, you can bring down the swelling faster.
During the time of post-surgery healing, there are certain things that you shouldn't do. If you don't remain careful, it may take more time to heal. Here is what you should avoid after getting your tooth extracted:
You must avoid smoking completely for at least 72 hours after getting your tooth extracted. For you to recover, blood clots are very important. If you smoke after tooth extraction, the chemicals in tobacco displace the blood clots that are forming over your wound. It can also result in the formation of a dry socket at the surgical site. A dry socket is formed when the blood clot over the wound gets dissolved, and the underlying bone and nerves are exposed. Hence, to prevent such painful conditions, and to ensure that you heal completely, avoiding smoking is a must.
Don't Probe The Extraction Site
Having an open space in place of a tooth may feel a little weird. You may also have a constant urge to poke the site with your tongue or explore it with your tongue. But you should avoid doing any of these because they can dislodge a blood clot and prevent your wound from healing. Poking the site with your finger or toothpick will result in even more bleeding. It also increases the risk of a dry socket. Even if you wish to clean your mouth, wait for 48 hours and only use warm mild saltwater to rinse gently.
It is normal to have an increased flow of saliva and blood after tooth extraction. And you may feel that spitting is a simple solution. You might feel an urge to spit all the blood and saliva being collected in your mouth. But do not do it! Spitting puts pressure on the mouth and affects the blood clotting on the extraction site. In cases when there is too much saliva and blood in your mouth, you can lean over the sink. Without any pressure, let the blood and saliva drip out of your mouth gently.
Don't Sneeze or Blow Your Nose
You should avoid blowing your nose and sneezing, especially if you have got your upper tooth extracted. When you blow your nose, it puts enough pressure to dissolve the blood clot at the surgical site. Due to similar reasons, it is advised to avoid sneezing. But if you can't avoid a sneeze, remember to keep your mouth wide open and then sneeze into a tissue. No pressure should be created in the sinus area. If you blow your nose or sneeze with increased pressure and you can feel increased pain at the surgical site, you should contact your dentist, or NJ best dental care provider.
Don't Use Straws
Though it is advisable to consume fluids and soft foods after your tooth extraction surgery, you should avoid using a straw. When you use a straw to drink, it causes a sucking action. This sucking action increases the risk of bleeding and the formation of a dry socket. To ensure proper healing, don't use a straw for at least 48 hours post-extraction. If you want to drink liquids (except alcoholic and carbonated drinks), you can sip them directly from the tumbler.
Dental Care Services
Getting a tooth extracted can be painful if you don't take proper care after the surgical procedure. Right from the day when you get your teeth extracted, till you heal completely to get ready for tooth replacement options, you must take sufficient rest. No matter how you feel, you must take all the medications prescribed by your dentist. At any stage, if you feel too much discomfort, you shouldn't hesitate to call your doctor.
The role of your dentist isn't only limited to extracting your teeth and prescribing medicines. It is equally important to provide aftercare instructions and attend to any problems that you may face during the period of recovery. There are several affordable and cheap dentist in New Jersey. You must find a dental clinic and a dental professional that makes you feel comfortable. You can search for the top rated dental care clinic in New Jersey, or in your area.
At Jackson Dental, we understand that you might be anxious about the aftercare post tooth extraction. Hence, we guide you through everything step by step so that you don't have to stress about the procedure. Our team of skilled specialists makes sure that you are comfortable at Jackson dental, right from the first visit. We value your time, health, and money and provide you the most affordable dental care services in New Jersey.
We have highly experienced professionals and the best dentist in New Jersey who monitor your dental health at every stage and provide you with the best care. With the new tools and technologies of modern dentistry, we ensure maximum comfort while you get your dental procedures done. Whether it is a tooth extraction or affordable dental implants and crowns in New Jersey, get the best dental care services at Jackson Dental.
Getting a tooth extracted may sound scary but it must be done in cases where your dental health is at risk. To prevent the adjacent teeth from decaying, it becomes essential to remove a tooth. However, today the tooth removal procedures, performed by NJ Top dentist, are way quicker with minimum pain and discomfort. What you should do is take a rest. If you remain aware of the Dos and Don'ts after tooth extraction, you may need only a few days to resume your earlier activity. Adequate rest, correct medications, and the right food during the recovery is the key to healing well.