Tooth Extraction Aftercare

Tooth Extraction Aftercare

Our permanent teeth are designed to last for a lifetime. However, due to factors like tooth decay or infection, gum disease, crowded teeth or dental trauma, we end up losing them earlier than anticipated. At times, the teeth fall off on their own, but in most cases, you may need a tooth extraction to correct the problem.

Tooth extraction is a dental procedure done to remove one or more teeth. After the extraction, you should expect recovery with seven and ten days, depending on the location of the extracted tooth. Your recovery will largely rely on how well you take care of the gum wound. Here are several tips for aftercare;

1. Watch what you eat

Soft foods such as soups, smoothies, and scrambled eggs are ideal after tooth extraction. After a few days, you can start to add other foods gradually.

Avoid spicy foods as they may irritate both your gums and teeth as well as impair the healing process. It is best to wait for the dentist’s advice on when to start taking your favorite spiced foods.

Also, stay away from crunchy foods and snacks. Not only are they hard to chew and aggravate the wound, but also some food particles may get stuck in the tooth socket.

Sugar is also bad as bacteria feeds on it thereby increasing the risk of infection and worse still tooth decay.

2. Protect your socket

After tooth extraction, what remains is referred to as a tooth socket. Protecting your tooth socket is important to prevent infections as well as dry socket– a common tooth extraction complication.

When the tooth is extracted, a blood clot develops in the socket to facilitate healing. This blood clot should stay intact until the recovery process is complete. However, due to certain factors and activities, the clot might break, exposing the bone—hence the name dry socket. It is painful, uncomfortable, and it delays healing.

You can protect your socket by avoiding straws which can dislodge the clot, and also staying away from cigarettes and tobacco.

3. Avoid smoking

Not only does smoking cause dry socket, but also it provokes inflammation of the gums, which in turn, causes periodontal disease. Furthermore, smoking may cause high blood pressure, gum bleeding, and dizziness. It also impairs wound healing and may affect your recovery.

4. Apply ice

Immediately after an extraction, apply ice packs to your teeth. Dentists advise patients to eat ice cream after a procedure because of its causes the blood vessels to constricts and reduce swelling.

Use the ice packs in 15-minute intervals for the first few hours. Don’t leave the ice packs for too long to prevent tissue damage.

Other aftercare tips;

  • Rinse your mouth with salt water for every one to two hours for the first two days after surgery
  • Brush your teeth as normal, but avoid the wounded area
  • Rest and lower your activity level after the extraction
  • Take pain relievers as prescribed by the dentist

If your blood clot dislodges, or experience itching and swelling, visit our dental clinic, we offer emergency dentistry services.

Can I Avoid Tooth Extraction?

Yes, you can. Several dental treatment options can prevent tooth decay as well as correct misaligned, crooked, and crowded teeth. We offer a variety of braces to correct crowded and misaligned teeth. Furthermore, we have dental sealants that protect the teeth from decay. These thin, plastic coatings are ideal for children and teenagers, although adults without fillings or decay can use them too.

What Next

Tooth extraction can get rid of tooth decay and correct any overcrowded bite. On the downside, it leaves missing spaces in between (once permanent teeth come off, they don’t grow back).

When the tooth socket is healed, you can visit our dentist to discuss the various treatments for correcting your spaces. We offer dental implants, a permanent surgical procedure for replacing missing teeth. You can also choose dental veneers and dental bridges among others. Each of these cosmetic dental treatments corrects the gaps and have their pros and cons.

If you want tooth extraction or are confused about the right dental treatment you want? Come see us at Smile Scarsdale for an assessment and dental evaluation.