After Tooth Extraction

After tooth extractions, it is important for a blood clot to form to stop the bleeding and begin the healing process. That’s why we ask you to bite on a gauze pad for one to two hours after the appointment. If the bleeding or oozing still persists, insert another gauze pad and bite firmly for another hour. You may have to do this several times.

After the blood clot forms, it is important not to disturb or dislodge the clot as it aids healing. Do not rinse vigorously, suck on straws, smoke, or drink alcohol for 72 hours. These activities may dislodge or dissolve the clot and retard the healing process. Limit vigorous exercise for the next 48 hours as this will increase blood pressure and may cause more bleeding from the extraction site.

After the tooth is extracted, you may experience some pain and swelling. An ice pack or an unopened bag of frozen peas or corn may be applied to the area. Do not apply ice beyond the first 24 hours. The swelling usually subsides after three days. For moderate pain, one or two over the counter tablets of Ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil) or Tylenol may be taken every three to four hours. For severe pain, take any prescribed medication as directed. The prescribed pain medicine may make you groggy and will slow down your reflexes. Do not drive an automobile or work around machinery. Avoid alcoholic beverages. Pain or discomfort should begin to subside after the third or fourth day. If pain persists, it may require attention and you should call the office.

Use the pain medication as directed. Call the office if the medication doesn’t seem to be working. If antibiotics are prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length of time, even if signs and symptoms of infection are gone. Drink lots of fluids and eat nutritious soft food on the day of the extraction. You can eat normally as soon as you are comfortable.

It is important to resume your normal dental routine after 24 hours. This should include brushing and flossing your teeth at least once a day. This will speed healing and help keep your mouth fresh and clean.

After a few days you will feel fine and can resume your normal activities. If you have heavy bleeding, severe pain, continued swelling beyond the initial 72 hours, or a reaction to the medication, call the office immediately at 818 986-6787.