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Healing the Trauma of an Extraction

Posted on 2/27/2017 by Dr. Janice Pliszczak
A woman in pain after a tooth extraction.
When you have to get a tooth extracted, that is a trauma to your mouth. Those tissues need time to recover and heal. Sometimes the healing is quick and happens with very little fuss, but other times, that tissue needs quite some time before it feels like normal again.

If you are going through having a tooth extracted, make sure you are taking good care of the socket afterwards to help heal the area as quickly, and carefully, as possible.

How to Heal the Quickest

There are a few things that you need to do when you want to heal following an extraction. First, always defer to what you were told by your dentist or oral surgeon. They know your situation best, so go with their guidelines. Second, keep your head elevated. This should be done for 2-3 nights to help keep the swelling down.

Third, ice down your cheek and/or jaw for the first 24 hours, as much of that time as you can. Fourth, do anything you can to avoid pulling the clot out of the extraction site. This is known as dry socket, and is painful and can interrupt healing.

Don't smoke, use straws, or suck on anything until the socket has been healing for 1-2 weeks. Finally, keep your mouth moist. Until you can go back to eating solid foods, drink liquids. You want water and coconut water to tide you over. If you can drink it ice cold, that's even better since it reduces swelling.

If you have any questions at all, or your mouth starts bleeding or swelling in a way that cannot be stopped or controlled, contact our office or oral surgeon a call immediately.

They will want to see you to make sure everything is alright. Expect a bit of bleeding and swelling, just not to a serious extent.

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