Advice after Extractions
YOU CAN EAT & DRINK STRAIGHT AWAY, BUT:
- In the first 24 hours, do not rinse, do not spit, do not suck the wound, and do not have a very hot drink, as all these actions could make the gums bleed. It is also a good idea not to brush your teeth, especially near the wound. If you feel a few drops of blood in your mouth, just swallow them. Discoloration of saliva is normal. If heavy bleeding occurs, immediately compress a clean, rolled up tissue, on the wounded gum, for about 30 minutes. Repeat if the bleeding re-occurs. You may use a moistened tea bag as an alternative. If you cannot stop the bleeding, phone us at 067 33350 or 067 33520. If it is after hours and no one answers at these numbers, phone 0876866180. If no one answers at this number either, phone the A&E department in the nearest hospital.
- Make sure you do not bite your numb lip or tongue immediately after the extraction, as they could be numb for a few hours.
- Do not drink alcohol for a couple of days and do not smoke today as it doesnt help the healing process. Avoid heavy exercise or rough sports for a couple of days. Drink plenty of fluids. Well-balanced meals are important for your recovery.
- After 24 hours you can rinse the gums with warm salted water after each meal, for about a week. If the corners of your mouth are cracked or sore keep them lubricated with Vaseline.
- If you experience some discomfort take paracetamol based tablets (1 for a child, 2 for an adult). If the pain is severe, contact us straight away. Take note that paracetamol and alcohol should not be taken together. A little bit of swelling for a day is not unusual. If you want to help bring down the swelling on your face, apply an ice-pack wrapped in a towel for 10 minutes per day.
- If the swelling persists, contact us straight away.
- If you develop a fever, contact us straight away.
- If the extraction was a surgical extraction, with sutures, then 3-4 days of swelling and discomfort are normal.
- In some cases, especially after the extraction of a lower back tooth, you could develop a dry socket, which is extremely painful. If it happens, contact us straight away as we can put a dressing to ease the pain. Other possible temporary complications include aches in teeth on the same side, sore throat or ear-ache.
- You may also think a bit of the tooth is left in, if your tongue finds a sharp edge, it is not a bit of tooth but your jaw bone. This will heal in time. Sometimes little bits of it could loosen and fall out a few days later. It is not a cause for concern
NB: It takes 6-12 weeks for the gums and bone to heal completely so please accept the hole in your gum, some minor aches, discomfort and food packing in this period. Dont be alarmed if you have some bruising there (a yellow/black/blue discolouration on your face), or where the injections were, it will fade away after a week or so.
Also, if you have had an upper premolar or molar removed, there is a small risk that a communication between the mouth and the sinus may develop. You may not be aware of that for several weeks (it can develop as late as 4-6 weeks after the extraction). It will often manifest itself as a discharge of fluid from the nose after drinking, possible discharge of pus from the nose, acute or chronic sinusitis and a foul taste in the mouth and smell in the nose. To minimise that small risk you should not smoke, you should not blow your nose very hard or go flying for the next 4-6 weeks, you should open your mouth when you sneeze and you should finish your course of antibiotics if you have been given one. In any case, if you suspect a communication between your mouth and your sinus, contact us straight away.