Taking Care of Your Tooth Socket
The clot that forms in the socket following extraction is very important. It is the scaffolding for the healing process and seals the underlying bone against infection. Protect it by:
- Biting firmly on the gauze we have given you for 30-60 minutes.
- Not rinsing your mouth with anything for 24 hours.
- Drink plenty of fluids when the bleeding has stopped, but keeping them on the other side only (no rinsing) and nothing too hot or too cold.
- Eat only when the bleeding has stopped and the anaesthetic has worn off. Once again, keep the food on the other side and nothing too hot or too cold.
- Do not play with the socket, i.e. keep fingers and tongue away.
- Definitely no smoking and no alcohol for at least 24 hours.
- Generally take it easy – do not do anything likely to increase your blood pressure.
Understandably, your mouth will be uncomfortable for a few days when the anaesthetic wears off. We would recommend an analgesic called Nurofen, which is available over the counter at most chemists. If not, we recommend paracetamol over aspirin. If the pain is getting worse after about 3 days post-extraction, then it is likely that the socket is infected. Please contact us as this can be treated very simply and our fee includes routine post-op care.
To help with the healing, we recommend that you rinse with warm salty water following each meal and before retiring at night. Commence this on the second day and continue for 4 or 5 days.