Your Guide to Tooth Extraction Aftercare: Top 7 Must-Know Do’s and Don’ts After Having a Tooth Pulled

Adult teeth are permanent. However, there are plenty of reasons to undergo a tooth extraction. A dentist may recommend removing a tooth to avoid the risk of infection or to align a patient’s teeth properly. No matter your reason for having a tooth pulled, one thing is certain: being informed and prepared is vital.

According to the American Dental Association, changes will naturally occur in your mouth following a tooth extraction. So, having the right aftercare information is key to preventing complications, promoting healing, and ensuring your comfort.

If you’re getting ready to undergo a tooth extraction procedure soon, this article can be your helpful guide. We’ll briefly cover what to expect once you arrive at your dentist’s office, and then we’ll share essential yet straightforward tooth extraction aftercare tips.

What to Expect With a Tooth Extraction

If you’re getting your permanent tooth pulled for the first time, it’s natural to feel a little anxious. Being informed about what you’re getting into can help ease your nerves and allow you to go into your dentist’s office with a clear head. So, here’s a brief rundown of what to expect once the day of your scheduled tooth extraction arrives:

  • Informing your dentist about your complete medical history is crucial. Undergoing a tooth extraction is generally very safe. However, some conditions put you at risk of developing severe infections. So, be sure to let your dentist know about your medical history, especially if you have heart problems, liver diseases, or an impaired immune system. The dentist may recommend taking antibiotics before and after the tooth extraction.
  • Your dentist will give you a local anesthetic before the procedure. This step numbs the area where the tooth will be removed and prevents you from feeling any pain. Some tooth extraction cases may require a strong general anesthetic, which will make the patient sleep through the procedure.
  • A small amount of bleeding is normal. After a tooth has been removed from its socket, a blood clot will typically form in that area. Your dentist will likely ask you to bite down into a gauze pad to stop the bleeding. In some cases, such as when blood clots break loose, a sedative dressing may also be placed over the socket.

7 Essential Do’s and Don’ts After a Tooth Extraction

Now that you know what to expect during the procedure, let’s talk about what to do after tooth extraction. Proper follow-up care is vital after getting your tooth pulled because it speeds up healing and helps you prevent further discomfort. Here are a few simple tips to make your recovery easier:

#1: DO get enough rest.

You may be tempted to dive back into your daily exercise or workout routine immediately, but resting is vital for helping your body recover and heal. For at least 24 hours after the tooth extraction, limit your physical activity. To be completely safe, don’t do anything too strenuous for the next day or two.

#2: DON’T eat solid foods immediately.

After tooth extraction, it’s best to stick with soft foods like soup, pudding, mashed potatoes, and yogurt for at least 24 hours. You can start adding solid foods back into your diet once your extraction site heals and the numbness in your jaws wear off. In addition, eating hot or spicy foods should be avoided while your mouth is still healing.

#3: DO allow clots to form on the tooth extraction site.

As we previously discussed, your dentist will place a gauze pad over the socket where the tooth was extracted to stop the bleeding and allow blood clots to form. Try to keep the gauze pad in place for at least one hour after the tooth extraction procedure. 

Once your gauze pad has become soaked with blood, change it immediately. Otherwise, leave it be for three to four hours. Also, make sure that you don’t chew on your gauze piece because that may cause more bleeding to occur.

#4: DON’T skip medicines prescribed by your dentist.

Your dentist will likely give you medicines, such as anti-inflammatory drugs, antibiotics, or painkillers, to bring home with you after the tooth extraction procedure. Don’t forget to take the prescribed amount at the right time. These medications will aid your recovery, prevent pain, and shield your mouth from bacterial infections.

#5: DO apply an ice pack to keep swelling down.

In some cases, swelling may occur after the extraction procedure. If this happens to you, the most effective way to reduce the swelling is by applying an ice pack to the affected area. You can do this for ten minutes at a time.

#6: DON’T rinse your mouth or spit forcefully for a day.

For 24 hours after the tooth extraction, avoid rinsing your mouth or spitting. Doing these may dislodge the blood clot forming in the socket and delay the healing. However, after a day has passed, it is recommended to rinse your mouth with a warm saline solution (eight ounces of warm water with half a teaspoon of salt) to help clean the extraction area.

#7: DO continue to brush and floss your teeth.

Practicing proper oral health habits is essential, especially after you just had your tooth pulled. Brushing and flossing can help you prevent bacterial infections that may arise after a tooth extraction procedure. However, when you brush your teeth and floss, be sure to avoid the area where the tooth has been extracted because touching the socket may provoke bleeding or delay healing.

Choose the Right Oral Care Products for Optimal Tooth Extraction Aftercare!

Undergoing a tooth extraction procedure doesn’t have to be an anxiety-inducing experience. Remember: knowledge and preparation go a long way when it comes to oral care. Now that you’re equipped with helpful and valuable aftercare tips, it’s time to take the next step and find the oral health products that can help make your recovery seamless. 

PRO-SYS provides various products to help you stay on top of your oral health before and after getting a tooth extraction. Whether you’re looking for a toothbrush, an interdental cleaner, or any other dental care device, you’re sure to find what you need with us. Learn more about our dentist-recommended products today!

Image source: Medical vector created by pch.vector –

Adult teeth are permanent. However, there are plenty of reasons to undergo a tooth extraction. A dentist may recommend removing a tooth to avoid the risk of infection or to align a patient’s teeth properly. No matter your reason for having a tooth pulled, one thing is certain: being informed and prepared is vital. According […]

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