After Tooth Extraction

Home Instructions After the Removal of a Single Tooth

After tooth extraction, it’s important for a blood clot to form to stop the bleeding and begin the healing process. Bite on a gauze pad for 30-45 minutes immediately after the appointment. If the bleeding or oozing still persists, place another gauze pad and bite firmly for another 30 minutes. You may have to do this several times to staunch the flow of blood.

After the blood clot forms it is important to not disturb or dislodge the clot. Do not rinse vigorously, suck on straws, smoke, drink alcohol or brush teeth next to the extraction site for 72 hours. These activities may dislodge or dissolve the clot and hinder the healing process. Limit vigorous exercise for the next 24 hours, as this increases blood pressure and may cause more bleeding from the extraction site.

After the tooth is extracted you may feel some pain and experience some swelling. An ice pack applied to the area will keep swelling to a minimum. The swelling usually subsides after 3 to 4 days.

For moderate pain, one or two tablets of Regular Strength Tylenol (325 mg) may be taken every 4 hours or one or two tablets of Extra Strength Tylenol (500 mg) may be taken every 6 hours. Do not exceed 4000 mg daily for an adult.

Ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) may be taken instead of Tylenol. Ibuprofen bought over the counter comes in 200 mg tablets: 2-3 tablets may be taken every 6 hours. Do not exceed 3200 mg daily for an adult.

Do not take the two medications at the same time but we do recommend alternating them for better pain control.

For severe pain, the prescribed pain medication should be taken as directed. Do not drive an automobile or work around machinery and avoid alcoholic beverages. Pain or discomfort following surgery should subside more and more every day. If pain persists, it may require attention and you should call the office.

Do not take any of the above medications if you are allergic to them, or have been instructed by your physician not to take them.

Pain typically begins to improve three to four days after your surgery.

If antibiotics are prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length of time even if signs and symptoms of infection are gone.

Drink lots of fluids and eat nutritious, soft food on the day of the extraction. You can eat normally as soon as you are comfortable.

It is important to resume your normal dental routine after 24 hours. This should include brushing and flossing your teeth at least once or twice a day. This will speed healing and help keep your mouth fresh and clean.

After a few days you should feel fine and can resume your normal activities. If you have heavy bleeding, severe pain, continued swelling after 3 to 4 days, or a reaction to the medication, call our office immediately at Chicago Office Phone Number 773-761-7171 in Chicago or Skokie Office Phone Number 847-676-9300 in Skokie.