In order to recover faster from dental surgery, it’s important to adhere to the following instructions:
Immediately after the surgery
The first thing you need to do after surgery is to bite firmly on the gauze pads which your dentist has put on the treated site. This will help stop the bleeding. Repeat this process once more after you get home.
Immediately after the surgery, you will feel numbness in your lips, cheeks and tongue. This is a normal after effect of the local anesthetic. Make sure you do not bite your lips, cheeks or tongue during this time. The numbness should wear off within six hours.
Dealing with the Bleeding
Once you are home, put a gauze pad on the extraction site and bite hard for about half an hour. If the bleeding continues, put another gauze pad on for another half an hour. Small amounts of bleeding can occur for up to one day after a tooth extraction and it is also normal to have traces of blood in your saliva for a few days. If you feel there is excessive bleeding, get in touch with your dentist immediately.
Medicines and Pain Management
After your surgery, your dentist will give you a list of medicines which you need to take. Do not forget to take the antibiotics and any other medicine prescribed to you since taking the right amount of medicine is a necessary step towards a speedy recovery.
As for the pain medication, your dentist might give you Ibuprofen, since it works very well for most people and helps them deal with the post-operative pain. You can take 400-600 mg of Ibuprofen every six hours for the first three days after the surgery. If you are allergic to any drugs, make sure that you let your dentist know so that he can suggest alternate medication.
Post Extraction Care
Don’t chew with the treated side. You need to avoid chewing on the side of your mouth where a tooth has been extracted from. In the case that you have had multiple extractions, you need to follow a diet of soft food like ice cream, jello, pudding, soup, mashed potatoes and yogurt. Do not eat any crunchy food like nuts or chips for at least a week after the extraction.
Avoid smoking and alcohol. You need to steer clear of smoking for at least three days after the surgery. It is best to avoid smoking for as long as you can since smoking slows down the healing process and further damages your teeth. Do not consume alcohol for 24 hours after the extraction and as long as you are on pain medication.
Don’t brush or spit on the first day. On the day you get your extraction done, remember that you should not brush, rinse or spit. The next day, brushing your teeth is fine but be careful and avoid the extraction site for at least three days. Three days after the surgery, you can rinse your mouth with warm water and salt – it is a great pain reliever.
Avoid straws. Using a straw after the surgery is a strict no-no, and you must follow this for at least three days post extraction.
Rest. Make sure to rest after the extraction and you will feel better in no time. Post-operative follow ups with your dentist is also very important, so make sure you do not miss any appointments after getting the tooth extraction done.