TOOTH EXTRACTION AFTERCARE
Following tooth removal, tooth extraction aftercare is an important aspect which will help to heal the site rapidly. Here are the do’s and dont’s after tooth removal.
- After local anaesthesia is administered during tooth extraction, the lips, tongue and teeth remain numb for about two hours or more. So chewing after surgery is to be avoided until the numbness has worn off
- Pain killers such as paracetamol and ibuprofen, available over the counter are usually sufficient to counteract the discomfort or mild pain, which is quite normal after an extraction. If necessary, stronger pain relievers can be administered with a prescription.
- Pain killers on an empty stomach should be avoided as it causes nausea .
- Application of an ice pack, on and off for 20 minutes, for the first 6 hours is said to help reduce pain and swelling.
- After extraction, a blood clot forming at the site of removal is vital to the healing process. Dislodgement of the clot may take place if the site of extraction is probed with the tongue or fingers. Using a straw while drinking and spitting vigorously also causes dislodgement of the clot.
- If you are suffering from a sinus infection or any allergies, make sure that you take the medication on time and relieve symptoms because sneezing violently or blowing your nose causes dislodgement of the clot.
- Avoid rinsing your mouth for the next 48 hours.
- Accumulation of food particles in the extraction socket and smoking should be avoided as it affects the healing process.
- Rinsing with warm saline solution 24 hours after the extraction keeps the area clean and promotes healing. Dissolve one teaspoon of salt in one cup of water. This should be done 2-3 times each day.
- If you are prescribed antibiotics, you must take them at the correct time and for the prescribed amount of days even if there are no signs of infection.
- It is best to relax yourself and avoid strenuous exercise for the first 24 hours after surgery.
- Proper nourishment is required for healing to take place. Thus soft foods like yoghurt, soft soups, ice cream or cooked eggs can be ingested after the numbness has worn off.
- At least 8 glasses of water or fruit juice should be consumed each day.
- While resting, it is better to lie on pillows and keep the head elevated; this controls bleeding. Bite packs are also provided in case bleeding persists. You are instructed to bite gently but firmly on the bite packs for 20 minutes. A moist tea bag can also be used instead of bite packs. If bleeding still continues or seems excessive, it is vital that you inform the practice.
- You can brush and floss other areas of the mouth.
- The space left by the extraction will be filled with regenerated tissue and bone with time.
Taking good tooth extraction aftercare ensures rapid healing of the extraction wound so that you can eat and drink without discomfort.