Santa Fe and Los Alamos, NM – Here’s What to Do After You’ve Had a Tooth Pulled
Following an extraction, Alpine Laser Dental will send you home to recover. Recovery typically takes a few days. The following can help minimize discomfort, reduce the risk of infection, and speed recovery.
• Take painkillers as prescribed.
• Bite firmly but gently on the gauze pad placed by your dentist to reduce bleeding and allow a clot to form in the tooth socket. Change gauze pads before they become soaked with blood. Otherwise, leave the pad in place for three to four hours after the extraction.
• Apply an ice bag to the affected area immediately after the procedure to keep down swelling. Apply ice for 10 minutes at a time.
• Relax for at least 24 hours after the extraction. Limit activity for the next day or two.
• Avoid rinsing or spitting forcefully for 24 hours after the extraction to avoid dislodging the clot that forms in the socket.
• After 24 hours, rinse with your mouth with a solution made of 1/2 teaspoon salt and 8 ounces of warm water.
• Do not drink from a straw for the first 24 hours.
• Do not smoke, which can inhibit healing.
• Eat soft foods, such as soup, pudding, yogurt, or applesauce the day after the extraction. Gradually add solid foods to your diet as the extraction site heals.
• When lying down, prop your head with pillows. Lying flat may prolong bleeding.
• Continue to brush and floss your teeth, and brush your tongue, but be sure to avoid the extraction site. Doing so will help prevent infection.