Following the removal of one or multiple teeth, it is vital that you follow aftercare instructions carefully in order to ensure a smooth and successful recovery. Dr. Elias will advise you as to any variations of the following instructions that may affect you prior to your procedure. You can resume normal daily activities the day after your tooth is removed, and if all goes well, you should be completely healed within a few short days.
After extraction, you will be instructed to bite on a gauze pad for about a half hour following the procedure. When the site of extraction heals, a blood clot must form to control bleeding and form a protective scab. If excessive bleeding does not cease after 30 minutes, repeat using a new gauze pad. It is natural for this initial clot to take longer to form.
Once the clot has formed, avoid disturbing it, as it is the first step of healing. Avoid the following habits that may disrupt the blood clot for 72 hours:
- Aggressive rinsing
- Drinking from straws
- Alcohol consumption
- Brushing teeth around the extraction site
We also recommend you avoid strenuous activity for at least 24 hours after your procedure. Exercise increases blood pressure and may cause throbbing or excess bleeding to the extraction site. Avoid putting this pressure on your body during the first stages of healing and allow yourself some rest.
Pain and swelling are normal reactions to tooth extraction. Applying ice to the cheek on the outside of the extraction site helps swelling to subside and healing to be expedited. Continue to ice for 48 hours. Pain medication will be recommended and prescribed as necessary. It is important that you take this medication only as directed and contact Dr. Elias immediately if you experience any complications.
Drinking fluids and eating nutrient-rich foods are essential in giving your body the strength and hydration it needs for healing. Soft foods and liquids are recommended for the first day after the procedure, but return to normal eating habits as soon as you feel comfortable.
Oral hygiene is necessary for recovery, so be sure to keep your normal dental routine after 24 hours of the procedure. This includes brushing and flossing – they will only speed healing up and allow you to return to comfort sooner.
Extraction of Multiple Teeth
If you are having multiple teeth removed and your mouth prepared for dentures, dental implants or bridges, you may experience any of the following situations. Know that they are all considered normal and are merely a part of the healing process.
- If your swelling increases the day after your surgery: do not be alarmed! Your peak swelling will be reached in two days following your procedure. You may even experience discoloration around your eyes. You can control these symptoms using a moist towel and continuing your icing routine for 36 hours following surgery.
- If you develop a sore throat: you may drink soothing tea to control the pain. Because the throat muscles are so close to the jawline, swelling may extend to the throat and cause mild pain. This should not last more than 3 days.
- If the corners of your mouth stretch, dry out or crack: apply Vaseline or a similar ointment as needed.
- If you have a fever: continue to take antibiotics as recommended. If your temperature remains elevated after 48 hours, call our office for further instructions.