Some teeth are extracted because they are severely decayed; others may have root infection or have broken in a way that cannot be repaired. Sometimes teeth are extracted because they are impacted.
After Tooth Extraction
After tooth extraction, it’s important for a blood clot to form to stop the bleeding and begin the healing process. Your dentist will ask you to bite on a gauze pad for 15-20 minutes immediately after the procedure. If the bleeding still persists, change to another gauze pad and bite firmly for another 15-20 minutes.
After the blood clot forms it is important not to dislodge the clot. Do not rinse vigorously, suck on straws or brush teeth next to the extraction site for 24 hours. These activities may dislodge the clot and hinder the healing process. Limit vigorous exercise for the next 24 hours, as this increases blood pressure and may cause more bleeding from the extraction site.
After the numbing wears off, you may feel some pain and notice some swelling. You may take over-the-counter pain medicine as instructed by your dentist. You can also use an ice pack wrapped in a washcloth over the skin near the extraction site to reduce swelling. Your dentist may prescribe antibiotics when there is infection. Drink lots of fluids and eat nutritious, soft food on the day of the extraction.
It is important to resume your normal dental routine after 24 hours. This should include very gently brushing and flossing your teeth at least once a day. This will speed healing and help keep your mouth fresh and clean.
After a few days you should feel fine and can resume your normal activities. If you have heavy bleeding, severe pain, continued swelling for 2-3 days, or a reaction to the medication, call the dentist immediately.