Having your tooth extraction or removed is not a very good thing. It is rarely seen as a dental solution unless the state of dental health seriously requires it. Bottom line, you can only have your tooth extracted when there is nothing else that can be done, when the problem is severe or if there would be greater problems.
Nonetheless, when you have your tooth extracted, there will be probably a lot going through your mind about what to do next. The most important thing at this point is to keep your mouth clean after an extraction to prevent the entry of bacteria or fungi, which could lead to infection. On that note, below are answers to some questions you may have after tooth extraction. For more information read this blog.
What should I do after my tooth extraction?
You are probably panicking right now, but you should take it easy for the rest of the day. Rest as much as you can, and indulge in a bit of exercise if you must. Do not forget to keep your head up to avoid any bleeding.
What are the precautions I should take?
In the days following a tooth extraction, you should stay away from hot food or drink until the anaesthetic wears off. Because you may not be feeling the pain yet, the hot food or drink may burn or scald your mouth. Also, avoid the temptation to chew your cheek, as the urge to do so may arise because there is no feeling.
When you rest, make sure that your head is high, especially on the first night, and you can use an extra pillowcase or put a towel on the pillow in case you bleed a little.
Should I rinse my mouth?
Avoid the temptation to rinse that area for at least 24 hours after the extraction. You should also not eat on that side of your mouth until the socket heals. Generally, avoid disturbing the area with your tongue as it can introduce infection into the socket and affect healing.
What else should I avoid?
For at least 24 hours after the extraction, avoid alcohol as this can encourage bleeding and delay healing. Eat and drink only lukewarm food and drink – do not chew on that side of the mouth.
When should I brush?
It is essential at this point to keep your mouth clean after an extraction. While keeping your mouth clean, you should be careful around the extraction area.
What can I do to help my mouth?
The rate of healing is different for everyone. The one way to encourage quick healing is to keep the extraction area clean and ensure that the site is free from food debris and particles. For the first 24 hours after the extraction, do not rinse your mouth, as this will kick-start the healing process.
After the first 24 hours, you can use a salt-water mouthwash to help heal the socket. Prepare the mouthwash by adding a teaspoon of salt to a glass of warm water, and gently rinse around the socket with it twice daily. You should carry out this activity for about a week or as your dentist instructs you. Finally, a good diet is important in the healing process. You can take vitamin C supplement, as it helps your mouth to heal.
What should I take if I am in pain?
As expected, the area should be tender for the first few days afterwards. In most cases, simple pain relief should ease the discomfort or pain. Note that you should take the pain relief you use for headaches and not aspirin, as aspirin will make your mouth bleed. If you are ever in doubt, speak with your doctor before taking any medication.
Are there any medications I should avoid?
As mentioned earlier, aspirin or anything containing aspirin should be avoided at this point as it will only cause further bleeding. This is because aspirin causes the blood to thin slightly, and this can be a problem. Asthmatic people should avoid ibuprofen-based pain relief. For confirmation on what to avoid, speak with your doctor.
What do I do if I bleed?
Know that there may be slight bleeding for the first day or so after the extraction. However, if you notice any bleeding, do not rinse out your mouth; instead, apply gentle pressure on the socket. You can do this by biting down firmly on a folded piece of clean cotton material for at least 15 minutes. Ensure that the folded material is placed directly over the socket and should be replaced if necessary. If the bleeding persists after an hour or two, see your dentist.
Why am I still in severe pain?
You might be experiencing severe pain because the socket has been infected. This happens when there is little or no blood clot in the tooth socket or the bony socket walls have been exposed and become infected. It is called a dry socket and can be very painful.
You should see your dentist, who will place a dressing in the socket and prescribe antibiotics to relieve the infection in such a situation.
When would I be able to smoke again?
At this point, you should not do anything that will increase blood flow or bleeding. As long as possible, avoid smoking, and only go back when your socket has healed completely.
Will I have to see my dentist again?
If the extraction was a difficult one, your dentist might give you follow-up appointments. This could be to remove any stitches or to monitor the healing progress.
You can only have your tooth extracted when there is no other remedy for dental issues or when the tooth has become irreversibly affected. Reach out to our dentists when you visit EmergencyDentistinLondon.co.uk to book your appointment for dental consultations, diagnosis and treatment. Get in touch with us today for more information.