Dentists take every step imaginable to try to save an ailing tooth. After all, they know that there are no artificial replacements that can match the power your natural teeth. Times will arise, unfortunately, when all efforts are exhausted and the only thing left to do is extract it.
Extraction procedures are often routine and rather quick. The healing is, too, if the proper care is taken.
Bleeding Immediately Following an Extraction
As soon as the tooth is extracted, you can expect bleeding that will often continue as you are leaving the dental office and heading home. This is why your dentist will place a few pieces of gauze or a gauze roll in the extracted area and ask you to bite down.
The pressure from your bite will help to stop the bleeding while the gauze collects any blood that escapes.
Over time the gauze will become saturated – usually with more saliva than blood. Extra gauze should be provided so that you may replace it as necessary until the bleeding stops. This usually lasts about one to two hours.
Protecting the Extraction Site
The healing that takes place within the first 24 hours after an extraction involves clotting. The site where the tooth was removed has left an empty socket with bone. The blood pools in this area and will form a clot as the body’s way of protecting the open pathway.
The blood clot will dry and remain in the socket as it heals. You do not want to do anything to disrupt this area otherwise you will find yourself dealing with intense pain that can be very uncomfortable to handle. This is known as dry socket.
Thankfully, nearly all patients heed the warnings and take care not to dislodge the clot.
Tips For Healing After Extraction
How can you protect the extraction site? Here are a few things you should - and should not - do. Taking the right steps will give you the greatest chance of healing successfully while minimizing any bleeding along the way.
- Avoid any rigorous activity as it can cause excess bleeding - and it can also cause dry socket.
- Do not brush your surgical site.
- Avoid vigorous rinsing and spitting, though you may do a gentle salt water rinse.
- Drink your drinks without a straw and be sure to avoid those that are hot as it can dissolve the blood clot.
- Avoid eating anything crunchy, chewy, or hard as it can put the extraction site in jeopardy.
Again, you don’t want to put pressure on the socket. Smoking, blowing your nose, playing a musical wind instrument, drinking from straws, and vigorous movements can all put you at risk for dry socket.
Follow these tips, take it easy, and relax — your extraction site should heal quickly without issue. Of course, if you are experiencing any excessive bleeding, you should reach out to your dentist’s office right away.
Tooth Extraction in Montgomery, AL
The highly skilled dentists of SmileMakers Comprehensive Dentistry have all the experience necessary to save an ailing tooth. But in those instances where extraction is the only option, they excel at that, too.