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Extractions | Instructions for Post-Operative Care



The removal of teeth is a surgical procedure, and post-operative care is imperative.
Please follow ALL instructions carefully to avoid any unnecessary pain and possible infection.

  • If Bleeding Continues, Bite on Gauze for 20 minutes to Stop Bleeding.
    Bleeding is natural and a required part of the healing process. Most of the initial bleeding is usually resolved after the first couple of hours following an extraction but patients should expect an “oozing” of blood to continue throughout the healing process. This oozing of blood is not active bleeding but may discolour the saliva pink. When removing the gauze be careful not to tear it out as to remove the blood clot, by gently removing the gauze and wetting the gauze if necessary. Removal of the blood clot will result in renewed bleeding.
  • For the first 24 hours, we recommend you avoid the following:
    • Smoking (for at least 2 weeks)
    • Drinking alcohol
    • Blowing your nose
    • Spitting
    • Eating hot soup or drink hot liquids
    • Physical/Strenuous Activity as this may increase bleeding
  • Any of the above may cause the blood clot to dislodge from the socket, causing a “dry socket” and resulting in unnecessary pain. If you get a dry socket it usually starts about 2-3 days after the extraction and feels like a strong throbbing in the area where the tooth used to be. Please call us if this occurs.
  • Maintain a soft diet for the remainder of the day.
    Examples are warm (not hot) soup, ice cream, smoothies etc. However it’s recommended to wait 3 hours (or until the numbness wears off ) before consuming food.
  • Using ice packs on the area of your face next to the extraction sight can minimize pain and swelling.
    Leave the ice pack on for 20 minutes and then off for 20 minutes. Do this during the first 24 hours to minimize swelling. After 48 hours, you may apply a warm compress to increase circulation and promote healing.
  • Take the pain killers recommended at your appointment, as per their instructions.
    To control discomfort, take pain medication as recommended by your dentist. If antibiotics were prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length of time.
  • If you were not prescribed a pain medication by us but are experiencing pain after your appointment, we recommend taking over the counter pain medication. We recommend Ibuprofen.(Advil, Nurofen) or Paracetamol (Panadol).
  • The gum tissue will be tender for a few days. Rinse with warm salt water.
    Tomorrow start rinsing gently with warm salt water (1/4 teaspoon of salt to 300ml Water) every four hours for 2-3 days.
  • After eating you may get food in the extraction socket.
    Do not pick the food out of the socket. Instead gently rinse or swish the food out. Picking the food out, often disturbs the blood clot and initiates further bleeding. Any remaining small food particles will be pushed out or metabolized by the body.
  • Elevate your head with an extra pillow at night time.
    This will prevent extra blood pressure in the area from disturbing the blood clot. If any problems or questions arise.

If you have any difficulties or concerns following your surgery, please do not hesitate to call us or return to the practice for a follow-up.


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