What Are the Do's and Don'ts After Tooth Extraction? 

Tooth extractions are relatively simple and standard procedures. Your dentist will numb the affected tooth before removing it from its socket. More often than not, tooth extractions don't last more than half an hour. 

While it's a relatively straightforward procedure, proper aftercare is essential to ensure a speedy and complication-free recovery. Failing to do so, may lead to a painful condition known as a dry socket where the blood clot gets dislodged from the extraction site. 

With that in mind, here's what you should and shouldn't do after tooth extraction. 

Do's After Tooth Extraction

Make sure to do the following after tooth extraction: 

  • Bite Down on the Gauze: After the tooth extraction, your dentist will place a piece of gauze over the extraction site to control bleeding. This is an important step in the recovery process as it will help with the formation of a blood clot that will protect the exposed nerves and tissue. Bite down on the gauze firmly for at least 30 minutes after the extraction. 
  • Follow Your Dentist's Instructions: Dr. Melanie Villalobos or Dr. Margaret Meadows will provide you with specific instructions on how to care for your extraction site, including how often to rinse your mouth with saltwater, what to eat, and when to take pain medication. It's essential to follow these instructions carefully to avoid complications such as a dry socket or an infection.
  • Rest: While your body knows what to do, it's important to help it heal. Take it easy for the rest of the day after your tooth extraction. Avoid any strenuous physical activity, and rest as much as possible.
  • Drink Plenty of Water: Staying hydrated can help reduce swelling and promote healing. Drink plenty of water, but avoid using a straw, as the suction can dislodge the blood clot.

Don'ts After Tooth Extraction

Here's what NOT to do after tooth extraction:

  • Don't Smoke: Smoking or chewing tobacco can delay healing and increase the risk of complications such as a dry socket.
  • Don't Rinse Your Mouth Too Vigorously: Rinse your mouth gently with salt water to keep the extraction site clean. Instead of spitting the water, you can just open your mouth and let the liquid spill out. 
  • Don't Eat Hard, Crunchy, or Sticky Foods: Stick to soft, easy-to-chew foods for the first few days after the tooth extraction. Hard, crunchy, or sticky foods can irritate the extraction site and delay healing. Food particles can also get stuck in the extraction site and cause an infection. 
  • Don't Touch the Extraction Site: As tempting as it may be, avoid touching the extraction site with your tongue or fingers. By doing so, you can introduce bacteria into the wound and increase the risk of infection.

Both Dr. Melanie Villalobos and Dr. Margaret Meadows will give you all the information you need to ensure a smooth and speedy recovery. 

If you think you may need a tooth extraction in Coronado, get in touch with the team at Coronado Dental Associates to book your appointment. 

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