“It’s like pulling teeth” may be an expression you use when getting your kids to pick up their toys or do their homework, but nothing is like pulling teeth than actually getting your teeth pulled. Often, patients who are chronic tobacco users, have poor dental hygiene, or extreme periodontal disease need to have their teeth pulled due to decay and erosion.
Just like with any surgical procedure, following the proper care instructions will prevent you from developing an oral infection.
Keep your Head Elevated
If you sleep flat on your back, this tip may be especially annoying to follow, but it’s important. Keeping your head elevated will help prevent excessive bleeding. Try elevating your head with two pillows for the first couple of nights.
It may sound counterintuitive, but you shouldn’t use toothpaste for the first week after your extraction. The foam from your toothpaste can result in dry sockets. To clean your teeth, try dipping your toothbrush in a little bit of mouthwash and gently brush your teeth— avoiding the surgical area.
One of your initial instincts to get blood out of your mouth may be to rinse with some water, but rinsing after a tooth extraction can lead to a dry socket. Avoid rinsing your mouth for about one to two weeks after your surgery.
For the first day or two, try to apply frequent pressure to the surgical area by biting down on a clean gauze pad or a damp tea bag. The frequent repetition of the pressure will help decrease the bleeding— just make sure to change out the pad frequently to avoid a bacterial infection.
After your tooth extraction, we will send you home with a detailed list of care instructions. Learn more about tooth extractions and care instructions and contact Dr. Janice Scott today!