Thomas D. Flanders, DDS, PLLC

What to know after a tooth extraction:

Anesthesia: The feeling of numbness will begin to wear off in 30 minutes to 4 hours. Until that time, avoid all hot foods or liquids, and do not chew. (This prevents accidentally burning or biting the lips, cheeks, inside of your mouth or tongue until feeling has returned.) If you have any concerns about prolonged numbess, call the office.

Gauze Pack: Fold the gauze into a small pack and place it over the site where the tooth was removed. There should be firm pressure on site. Keep firm biting pressure on teh gauze for one to two hours. Chnage the pack every 15 - 30 minutes. you can stop applying the gauze after 1 - 2 hours or when bleeding has stopped.

Bleeding: It's normal for the extraction site to bleed slightly or ooze blood for 12 - 24 hours following surgery.

Ice Pack: For the first 2 to 8 hours after surgery, apply ice packs to the outside of the face over the area where the tooth was removed. Hold the ice pack in place for 15 minutes or so, and then remove it for 15 minutes.  This will help reduce discomfort and swelling.  Cover the ice pack with a thin towel so the pack is not directly on your skin.

Medications: Do NOT take any products with aspirin because they may increase bleeding. In most cases, a pain medication without aspirin that's available over the counter (in a store) will give you good pain relief.  Use prescription and over-the-counter medications as instructed on the label.  If you have any bad side effects, stop taking the medications and call the office.  If you have a serious side effect or an allergic reaction, seek medical care immediately.

Diet: Eat a liquid or soft diet for the first 12 to 24 hours. Drink plenty of liquids for the first day or two after surgery. Don't use a straw because it may dislodge (break up) the blood clot that is forming where your tooth was removed.  Refrain from any carbonated beverages.

Oral Hygiene: Clean your mouth as usual, but avoid the site where your tooth was removed.  Do not rinse or swish your mouth for the first 24 hours.  Don't smoke for 24 hours after surgery.

Possible Problems: Be alert for:

Dry socket: You might have a dry socket if you have constant moderate to severe pain, a bad taste, putrid odor, and poor clot formation at the extraction site.  If you have any of these symptoms, call the office immediately.

Fever: Check your temperature for the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery.  Call the office if you have a temperature higher than normal (98.6F).

Swelling: You can expect to have some swelling during the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery. If you have a lot of swelling or the swelling continues after 48 hours, call the office.

If you have any other questions or concerns,

please call the office 607-746-3555.

** If you experience any severe swelling, prolonged bleeding, severe or prolonged pain, high fever, dizziness, allergic reaction, or other problems that concern you, please call us immediately. If you can't reach us or haven't heard back from us in a reasonable time frame, go to the emergency department for immediate medical attention.

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