Care after dental extractions
INSTRUCTIONS ON CARE AFTER DENTAL EXTRACTIONS
RINSING: Starting tomorrow rinse your mouth gently every 3-4 hours, especially after meals, using 1
teaspoon of salt to a glass of warm water. Continue rinses for several days. DO NOT RINSE TODAY.
PAIN: Use any commercially available pain medication. If given a prescription, use as directed by the
SWELLING: Ice should be applied to the affected area using 20-minute intervals for 4-5 hours after the
BLEEDING: Following extractions, some bleeding is expected. If persistent bleeding occurs, place
gauze pads over bleeding area and bite down firmly for 1/2 hour. Repeat until bleeding stops.
FOOD: Diet should contain soft, light foods such as applesauce or Jell-O. Foods should be cold or room
temperature, no hot foods.
BONY EDGES: Small, bony fragments may work up through the gums during healing. These are not
roots and can easily be removed in the office if they are bothersome.
FURTHER CARE FOR REMOVAL OF IMPACTED TEETH OR OTHER BONE SURGERY
The removal of impacted wisdom teeth is quite different from the removal of erupted teeth. The following
conditions may occur, all of which are considered normal.
A) Swelling of the face (cheeks and jaw) for 3-5 days. The swollen area may become quite large on the
second and third day after surgery.
B) Tightness of the jaw muscles may cause difficulty with opening your mouth.
C) A slight earache may develop.
D) A sore throat may develop.
E) Numbness of the tongue or corner of the mouth on the side from which the tooth was removed. This is
usually a temporary condition.
F) Aching of the other teeth, referred to as sympathetic pain, is also usually a temporary condition.
G) The corners of the mouth may dry out and crack. Keep lips moist with ointment or cream.
DO NOT SMOKE FOR 3-5 days. Smoking could cause a condition called dry socket.
ANTIBIOTICS: If given a prescription for antibiotics take all the medication prescribed. If an adverse
reaction occurs stop taking it immediately.
There will be a cavity where the tooth was removed. Total healing takes 3-6 months. If the extractions
were in the upper molar teeth, do not blow your nose for 2 weeks. If nasal congestion occurs use Afrin or
Neo-Synephrin nose drops or spray for 3-5 days. These precautions are necessary for the continued health
of the sinus. Proper care following oral surgical procedures will hasten recovery and prevent
complications. If unusual symptoms, excessive bleeding, or drug reaction occur, call the office at once,
(206) 783-9335, or any nearby hospital.