People need teeth extracted for a variety of reasons: impacted wisdom teeth, infection, the tooth is damaged from trauma, or because of gum disease. A tooth extraction surgery can leave you feeling a bit under the weather, so your dentist or oral surgeon will give a few simple aftercare rules to follow to make your recovery a smooth as possible.
Following a procedure, you should apply an icepack to the affected area. Swelling is not uncommon in the aftermath of a tooth extraction, and the ice will help reduce both the swelling and any soreness you may experience once the anesthetic begins to wear off. Your dentist will also either prescribe painkillers for the duration of the healing time, or advise on what over the counter medications will serve you best, based on the situation. It’s best to give yourself a full 24 hours to rest after the procedure. After 48 hours rinsing your mouth with warm salt water will help with the healing process.
Food and Drink
An extraction site takes around 7-10 days to fully heal, and during that time, you should stick to eating soft foods like soup, applesauce, Jell-O, and yogurt. Solid food particles have the potential to get lodged inside the extraction site and cause infections. Most liquids are safe, but you shouldn’t use straws until the site is fully healed, so try your hand at creating smoothie bowls rather than just pouring it into a glass for a few days.
You Are Looking After Yourself
A week-long liquid diet doesn’t sound like fun, but remember that you are doing it to make sure that you don’t end up back at your dentist’s for an even more painful problem. Tooth extraction should be treated as any other out-patient surgery; you may be on your feet that same day, but you still require rest and a few common-sense tasks to ensure that you begin to feel better as quickly as possible. Stick to your liquid diet, don’t smoke, and call your dentist if the pain or swelling persists or increases after 48 hours.
If you have concerns about your oral health, or would like a second opinion about a possible tooth extraction procedure, please call Dr. Bruce Silva’s office to set up an appointment.