Almost everyone will have to have a tooth extraction at one time or another. Most commonly, the wisdom teeth must be extracted when there is not enough room for them in your mouth. If you take good care of yourself after you have your tooth removed, you should have a smooth and uneventful recovery.
Tooth Extraction Aftercare
It’s important to take good care of yourself after you’ve had a tooth removed. Diligent aftercare reduces the likelihood of infection and also helps prevent dry socket. Your dentist or oral surgeon will provide you with guidelines for how to treat yourself during your recovery. A typical aftercare regimen includes:
- Avoid strenuous exercise for a day or two
- Use gauze to control any bleeding
- Rinse gently with warm salt water
- Take any and all medications your dentist prescribes to control discomfort and prevent infection
- Avoid using a straw for several days
- Avoid brushing over the extraction site
- Report any unusual symptoms to your dentist as soon as possible
Immediately after your tooth is extracted, a blood clot forms in your mouth to protect the empty socket. If this blood clot becomes dislodged, it can create a very uncomfortable condition called dry socket. If you are careful about brushing, avoid using a straw, and rinse your mouth gently rather than vigorously, you should be able to avoid this issue.
Why Would I Need a Tooth Extraction?
There are many reasons why you might need to have a tooth removed. In the case of wisdom teeth, dentists usually recommend removal when there is not enough room in the mouth to accommodate the new tooth. This often leads to compaction, in which the tooth is wedged against an adjacent tooth or the jawbone and is unable to emerge properly through the gums.
A severely damaged or infected tooth might also require removal. In some cases, your dentist might extract the tooth to make room for braces or other orthodontic appliances. No matter why your tooth is removed, it’s very important to take care of the empty socket as instructed by your dentist. If you are diligent and follow your aftercare instructions, you are much more likely to experience a successful recovery.
If you need an extraction, contact our office today to schedule a consultation!