Post-Extraction Wellness: Essential Steps for Recovery

Tooth extractions can be daunting. The idea of having a tooth pulled out from its socket can make you anxious and ignore your oral health. Increased stress and anxiety can trigger unwanted reactions, negatively impacting your normal healing process and recovery time. However, this can be overcome if you are well-informed about post-extraction instructions advised by your oral surgeon. 

The Grand Valley dentist and their team of oral surgeons provide effective post-extraction instructions that promote quick healing and recovery with minimal complications.

A tooth extraction is a dental procedure that involves the complete removal of the tooth from its socket. Extractions can be performed using special instruments to pull out an infected, mobile, or impacted tooth after administering a local anesthetic to numb the area. 

The post-extraction instructions advised by dentists for optimal healing

Here are some general post-extraction instructions or guidelines to promote optimal healing and quick recovery:

  • Biting on a gauze: Bite on the gauze provided by your dentist firmly to control bleeding by promoting clot formation. Change the gauze every 30 to 45 minutes until the bleeding halts. 
  • Rest and relax: Rest properly and avoid strenuous physical activities to allow your body to heal properly. Avoid taking stress.
  • Apply an ice pack: Applying a cold compress can help reduce swelling and relieve discomfort.  Apply an ice pack for 10 to 20 minutes at a time. Repeat this 2 to 3 times a day. 
  • Do not disturb the blood clot: Avoid touching the extraction site with your fingers or tongue, and refrain from rinsing or spitting carefully for the first 24 hours post-extraction. Furthermore do not sip anything through a straw. Any clot dislodgement can lead to a painful condition called dry socket. 
  • Pain medication: Take any prescribed painkiller by your dentist to manage pain. 
  • Eat soft and bland foods: Stick to a soft or liquid diet for the initial days after extraction. Avoid chewing on hard and crunchy foods that can dislodge the blood clot. Avoid spicy foods that can trigger pain due to active ingredients. These can irritate the exposed nerve endings.  
  • Practice good oral hygiene: Brush and floss your teeth regularly and gently. However, avoid brushing the extraction site for the first day or two. You can rinse your mouth with warm salt water 2 to 3 times a day.
  • Avoid smoking or alcohol: Refrain from smoking and drinking alcohol for at least 24 hours after the extraction. Smoking can delay healing and increase your risk of complications in dry sockets.
  • Follow-up with your dentist: Ensure you follow up with your dentist to monitor healing and get your stitches removed.

Following the post-extraction instructions provided by your oral surgeon can enhance healing and reduce the risk of complications.