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Post surgery: aftercare instructions for tooth extractions

July 9, 2021

Sometimes your tooth can become so decayed it can cause illness, high fever, or your gums can even develop abscesses. At this point it is critical for the patient to get the tooth completely extracted. More often or not adult teeth as they grow can cause overcrowding. At this point tooth extraction then becomes a necessity to aid in the process of realignment. 

Here at San Marcos Dental Center our staff of professional dentists are experienced to safely extract your tooth and to remit the proper aftercare you need to speed up the healing and recovery process. To avoid any complications that could compromise your recovery, its important to follow these important aftercare instructions:

Tooth Extraction 

When a tooth is extracted, it’s natural for the socket to bleed, even if stitches are in place.  Our dental staff will supply you with gauze pads and instruct you to softly place them onto the socket to absorb any drainage, stop any bleeding and promote clotting.

Commonly, you’ll want to leave gauze in place for three or four hours following your tooth extraction, swapping it out as necessary. To promote clotting, we recommend patients avoid rinsing, smoking, and drinking through a straw for twenty four hours. Following your dental extraction, you will normally be prescribed antibiotics and painkillers to ease any discomfort. Most  patients do not require more than acetaminophen, while other patients may require stronger medication. To help with pain and swelling, ice compress can be applied to the side of your face in ten-minute intervals.

In the end, make sure to get adequate rest. Plan to rest for at least twenty four hours after your dental extraction and take it easy for a couple of days thereafter.  Elevate your head up on pillows when resting to minimize bleeding. 

First day of recovery 

Following  the initial 24-hour recovery period, you can moderately resume normal activities.  You can gently rinse your mouth with a salt water solution (8 oz. warm water, ½ tsp. salt) and brush and floss normally, being careful to avoid the open socket. You will want to eat only soft foods such as jello, smoothies, pudding, etc. After the socket has healed you can resume eating normal foods. 

The recovery period is typically just a few days, although it could take up to two weeks to fully heal from extraction.  If you have unusual symptoms that could be a sign of infection or something more serious, you should contact our office immediately.  Symptoms could include:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fever and chills
  • Redness and swelling
  • Excessive discharge
  • Cough, trouble breathing, or chest pain
Posted in Uncategorized by Gary Lovelace

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