Post Extraction Care


You or your child have just had a tooth extracted. Please follow these guidelines to help the gum heal:

  1. Bite firmly on the gauze sponge. We want pressure on the extraction site for at least one half hour (30 min) without changing it. Removing the gauze too soon could prolong the clotting of the blood. Leaving the gauze for that half hour should help stop the bleeding.
  2. After 30 minutes, the gauze may be removed and discarded.
    • The saliva may be colored due to the blood, but the active bleeding should have stopped
    • If additional bleeding does occur, fold one of the extra sponges given to you and bite on it for an additional half hour.
  1. Some bleeding following tooth extraction is to be expected. You should have very little discomfort following this surgery. If you’re uncomfortable or if you have difficulty falling asleep due to pain, you can take an appropriate analgesic, such as ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin)
    • If you have a medical condition, or a gastrointestinal disorder which precludes ibuprofen, acetaminophen (Tylenol or Excedrin) may be used instead
    • Do not take aspirin as it could prolong the blood-clotting process
    • Your doctor will advise you accordingly
  1. A light and cool diet is advisable during the first 24 hours. Avoid hot liquids.
  2. Do not rinse your mouth for 24 hours. After which, rinse with warm salt water (one teaspoon per 8 ounce glass of lukewarm water) 3 or 4 times per day, especially after meals. This will keep the extraction area clean and speed healing.
  3. Keep your finger and tongue away from the extraction site.
  4. No smoking for at least 3 days. Smoking can result in a painful dry socket which delays healing.
  5. Use an ice bag or towel continuously for the first 24 hours to reduce any swelling. Swelling may occur after the tooth has been remove, but is no cause for alarm
  6. Avoid drinking through a straw. The pressure created by using a straw may dislodge the blood clot and may cause more bleeding.

In case of unusual circumstances, please call the office so that we may schedule you for an emergency or follow-up visit.  Click below for a printable version of this information.


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