Your teeth are meant to last for the rest of your life, but sometimes one might become so decayed or damaged that extraction is the only option. A local anesthetic will be used during the procedure, but you’re likely to experience some discomfort afterwards. It’ll take usually take 7 to 10 days to heal after a tooth extraction in Colorado Springs, but luckily there are 5 things you can do to help make the process much easier.
1. Take Your Medication
The pain following the surgery once the anesthetic wears off can usually be controlled with an over-the-counter medication. Depending on your needs, however, you might receive a stronger prescription. Your periodontist in Colorado Springs might also recommend antibiotics if you’re suffering from a condition such as diabetes that puts you at a high risk of infection.
2. Control Swelling with an Ice Pack
You might experience some swelling, but you can keep it down with an ice pack or a cold compress. Be careful not to hold them in place for too long, though, or your might unintentionally damage the tissue. In most cases, you can use an ice pack for 10 minutes at a time.
3. Be Mindful of the Blood Clot
A blood clot will form at the extraction site; a gauze pad or some stitches will be used to stop any excessive bleeding. During the first 24 hours period, avoid rinsing, spitting or using a straw so that you don’t disturb the clot. After the first day, it’ll be safe to rinse your mouth with a salt solution (half a teaspoon of salt and 8 ounces of warm water) to kill bacteria and help prevent infection; however, be careful not to rinse too vigorously.
4. Eat Soft Foods
It’s important to stick to a soft food diet that doesn’t require a lot of hard chewing while you’re still recovering. Soup, pudding, yogurt and applesauce are all excellent, nutritious options. Smoothies can be a good choice as well as long as you use a spoon instead of a straw. You’ll gradually be able to enjoy more and more solid foods as healing progresses.
5. Continue Brushing and Flossing
You can never take a break from great oral hygiene! You can brush and floss as you normally would, but avoid touching the extraction site. Make sure your toothbrush is only touching your teeth at all times. You should also ask your periodontist if it would be okay to use mouthwash.
Remember: a tooth extraction is usually necessary for your health, but its success partly depends on a successful recovery period. Take it easy for about a week or two, and be very careful when it comes to protecting your teeth. Once healing is complete, you can ask about next steps, such as a dental implant or a fixed bridge to fill the gap and repair your smile.
About the Practice
At Rocky Mountain Periodontal Specialists, our periodontists know the importance of protecting your teeth and gums so that you can maintain good health overall. We offer surgical extractions for loose, infected, broken or otherwise damaged teeth. To schedule an appointment, visit our website or call (719) 574-4867.