If you need to have a tooth extracted, your dentist will do everything possible to ensure your comfort during the procedure. But what about afterward? Is there anything you can do to help with the healing process?
The answer to that is a resounding “yes!” Patients facing dental extractions in White Park should know these three tips for promoting healing after their procedure.
Tip 1: Keep Bleeding to a Minimum
After your extraction, your dentist will place a gauze pad over the site. You will want to bite down gently to help keep it firmly in place; keep it there for about an hour. There might be a bit of blood once you remove the pad, but this is normal. A clot will form shortly after, and you’ll want to keep it undisturbed.
Skip your workout that day, including any heavy lifting, and rest to give your body time to heal. You might want to plan to take the day off work.
Tip 2: Keep Pain and Swelling Down
If your dentist has prescribed pain medication, be sure to take it. It’s always best to stay ahead of the pain. You will probably take your first dose of pain pills before the numbness from the extraction has worn off. Take any prescribed antibiotics as well, and be sure to take the full course of treatment to avoid any infection.
If you don’t have pain pills, over-the-counter pain relievers are quite effective. Take those as needed, following package directions.
To keep swelling to a minimum, apply ice packs to your affected jaw every 10 minutes for 20 minutes at a time. Do this for the first 24 hours after your procedure. After 48 hours, warm compresses will help promote healing. You shouldn’t have much swelling after about 24 to 48 hours.
Keeping your head elevated slightly when you go to bed the first night can also help keep swelling down.
Tip 3: What to Avoid
Take care with food and drinks for the first couple of days after the procedure. Avoid hot foods or drinks and anything with carbonation. Eat soft foods and avoid biting down on the extraction area.
If you smoke or use tobacco products, those should be avoided for the first few days after the procedure. The chemicals contained in these products can delay healing. Avoid alcohol for the same reason.
Don’t drink through a straw for the first several days after the extraction. The sucking action can dislodge the clot that has formed at the site, resulting in a painful condition called “dry socket.”
Call White Park Dental if You Have Questions about Extractions
Give us a call if you have any concerns about dental extractions at your White Park dentist's office. Call us today!