Keeping Your Mouth Healthy After an Extraction

Do unpleasant thoughts cross your mind when you think of tooth extractions? Have no fear! Here at Charlotte Dental Implant Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, tooth extractions aren’t scary or painful. In fact, Ramesh K. Sunar, DMD, makes your comfort his top priority. Dr. Sunar’s vast experience as an endodontist and implant specialist means you get top-notch dental care from consultation through recovery with every procedure. 

The process of removing an infected, decayed, or impacted tooth is relatively simple. After surgery, there are a few things you can do to keep your mouth comfortable as you heal. Dr. Sunar offers these tips for keeping your mouth healthy after an extraction

Apply ice carefully

You can apply ice to the area of your jaw where you had a tooth removed, but do so carefully. Hold an ice pack against your cheek for no more than 10 minutes at a time. This will help relieve any discomfort you feel after an extraction and help prevent damage to the tissue as it heals. 

Avoid vigorous rinsing and drinking from straws

After your extraction, a blood clot will form in the space where your tooth once was. It’s important to keep this blood clot in place so your mouth can heal properly. 

If you dislodge the blood clot with vigorous rinsing or by drinking through a straw, you can end up with a condition known as dry socket, which can be very painful and cause healing to take longer.

Take it easy for a day

Resting will help your body recover from any type of surgery. You have to allow yourself time to heal. Try to take it easy after a tooth extraction and avoid strenuous exercise so as not to increase your blood pressure, which could result in bleeding. 

Don’t smoke

Smoking can increase your blood pressure, too, so don’t smoke after oral surgery for at least a day. Even better, use your tooth extraction as the perfect time to quit smoking and keep your teeth and body healthy in the long-term.

Brush gently

It’s important to keep your mouth clean so you can heal from the extraction, but you should be careful not to dislodge the blood clot or cause yourself more pain with vigorous brushing. Dr. Sunar will provide instructions regarding how to keep your mouth clean, especially in the first 24 hours after surgery. Rinsing with a warm saltwater solution may be enough to clean your mouth for your first day after the extraction.

Eat soft foods

As your mouth heals after the extraction, you can help reduce debris buildup in the space where the tooth was by eating soft foods. Soup, applesauce, and yogurt are good options. Avoid hard, crunchy foods that can get lodged between your teeth, which can cause pain and potentially delay the healing process. 

Take only recommended pain medications

Dr. Sunar will provide you with either prescription pain pills or a list of over-the-counter medications. Avoid aspirin, as it can make your mouth bleed and slow the healing process. 

Make plans for an implant 

If you have a permanent tooth removed after trauma or decay, it’s a good idea to replace your missing tooth with an implant, dental crown, or bridge. Leaving an empty space in your teeth can lead to bone loss in your jaw, and your nearby teeth will be prone to shift into the empty space. 

To avoid future dental complications, discuss tooth replacement options with Dr. Sunar, so once your mouth heals from the extraction, you can take the next step to restore your smile and oral health. 

If you need an extraction or want to see if you need one, book an appointment online or over the phone with Charlotte Dental Implant Center today.

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