While the goal of any dentist is to protect and preserve your natural teeth, there may be situations where this is not possible, and a tooth extraction is necessary. Teeth can require extraction for several reasons, including physical trauma or advanced decay. When there is no feasible way to restore your dental health due to an infected tooth, it may become necessary to remove it. Dr. David Cannon and the team at Cannon Dental will try to save your tooth but will perform an extraction when absolutely necessary. Here are some tips you can follow to ensure you heal properly and quickly following a tooth extraction.
Tips for Speedy Recovery from Having a Tooth Extracted
When you have a tooth extracted, you will need to be very careful with the wound site to protect the area and promote healing. Blood clots will form, which are normal and needful, so care should be taken not to dislodge them when brushing your teeth. Don’t brush or rinse your mouth the day of your extraction to allow time for blood clots to form and to start the healing process.
We recommend the following extraction care for a safe and speedy recovery after tooth extraction:
- If antibiotics are prescribed to prevent infection, be sure to take these as instructed to get the full benefit of their protection.
- Over-the-counter painkillers can help manage pain and discomfort after your extraction, and you can apply an ice pack to your face to reduce swelling.
- Stick to soft foods for several days after your extraction to minimize necessary chewing, as chewing can dislodge blood clots. Your soft food diet could include soups, mashed potatoes, apple sauce, yogurt, and scrambled eggs.
- Sip water from a glass to stay hydrated (no straw!) but avoid caffeinated or alcoholic drinks.
- Avoid smoking as it can impede your healing.
- Avoid strenuous activities for several days after the extraction.
- Start gentle brushing and flossing the day after your extraction but avoid the wound site. When rinsing, let the water drip from your mouth into the sink instead of spitting, as spitting can dislodge the blood clots. Rinsing with salt water can help cleanse the wound and expedite healing.