Extractions - Post-Treatment Instructions

After a tooth extraction:

  • Don’t smoke for at least a couple days after surgery.
  • Don’t drink hot or acidic beverages that may dissolve the blood clot, such as coffee, soda, or juice for the first couple days.
  • Avoid injury to the mouth during recovery.
  • Avoid consuming food that may get stuck in the site, such as nuts, seeds, or gum.
  • 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 will help with decrease swelling.
  • 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.
  • Don’t suck on a straw or spoon for 2-3 days after surgery. This will suction out the clot.
  • Avoid blowing on nose for 2-3 days if upper back teeth are extracted to prevent sinus damage.
  • Bite firmly but gently on the gauze pad and replaced the gauze before they become soaked with blood. Otherwise leave the gauze in for 30 minutes to ensure blood clotting.
  • Apply an ice pack or a frozen pea bag wrapped with a cheesecloth on the face of the extraction site for 10 minutes. Repeat several times within 24 hours. This will help with decreased swelling.
  • Starting the next day, swish your mouth out with warm salt water (1 tsp salt in 8 oz water). This will help with healing due to the antibacterial effect of the saltwater.
  • Take pain medication as prescribed by the doctor.
  • You can resume moderate exercise after 1 week and strenuous exercise after 2 weeks.

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