Getting a tooth extracted can be a painful and uncomfortable experience, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Do you know how to manage the pain and discomfort after a tooth extraction?
Tooth extraction is a common procedure that is done for various reasons, such as when the tooth is severely decayed or damaged, or when there is not enough space in the mouth for a wisdom tooth.
After the procedure, some degree of pain, swelling, and discomfort is expected, but this can be alleviated with proper care. If you have a tooth extraction scheduled in the near future, it’s essential to know how to manage the pain and discomfort that follows.
In this article, we’ll provide you with practical tips and advice on how to ease the discomfort and heal faster, so you can get back to your regular routine as soon as possible.
Tooth Extraction Pain
Tooth extraction is a common dental procedure where a tooth is removed from its socket in the mouth. The procedure is usually performed under local anesthesia and patients may experience some discomfort after the anesthesia wears off.
The severity of the pain varies depending on the individual and the complexity of the extraction. Pain can be managed with over-the-counter pain relief medication as prescribed by the dentist.
It is important to follow post-operative instructions provided by the dentist to ensure proper healing and minimize pain. In some cases, the dentist may prescribe stronger pain medication or antibiotics to manage pain and prevent infection.
How to Handle Pain After a Tooth Extraction
Tooth extraction is a common procedure that can be painful and uncomfortable. Following the right steps in recovery can help to alleviate the pain and discomfort of tooth extraction.
Use an Ice Pack to Reduce Swelling
Swelling is a normal reaction to tooth extraction and can be eased by applying an ice pack to your cheeks for 10-20 minutes at a time. Make sure to wrap the ice pack in a towel or cloth, to avoid damage to your skin.
How using an ice pack can help reduce swelling after tooth extraction:
- An ice pack can help reduce blood flow to the area, which reduces swelling.
- Cold temperatures can also numb the nerve endings in the area, which relieves pain.
- Using an ice pack in the first 24 hours after tooth extraction can help prevent excessive swelling.
- Regular use of an ice pack can help speed up the healing process and reduce discomfort.
Take Pain Medication as Prescribed
During the first few days after tooth extraction, pain medication is usually prescribed by your dentist or oral surgeon. Ensure to follow the given dosage to avoid taking too much or too little pain medication, which can lead to further complications.
Different types of pain medication to take after tooth extraction and how they can help:
- Over-the-counter pain relievers can be taken after a tooth extraction to reduce pain and inflammation.
- Prescription pain relievers such as codeine or opioids can also be prescribed for severe pain, but caution should be taken with their use and only used as directed by a healthcare provider.
- Topical analgesics such as benzocaine can provide temporary relief for gum soreness or irritation after tooth extraction.
- Antibiotics may be prescribed to prevent or treat infection which can also help reduce pain after a tooth extraction.
Avoid Hard Foods and Smoking
Eating hard foods, smoking, and drinking hot liquids are discouraged for the first 24 hours after tooth extraction as they can increase the pain and discomfort experienced. Soft foods or liquids are recommended, such as soup, smoothies, or mashed food.
Why hard foods, smoking, and drinking should be avoided after tooth extraction:
- Chewing hard foods can dislodge the blood clot that helps the extraction site heal, leading to a dry socket.
- Smoking can delay the healing process and increase the risk of infection.
- Drinking alcohol can interfere with blood clotting and cause bleeding at the extraction site.
- Hot liquids can dissolve the blood clot and cause bleeding, while cold liquids can cause discomfort.
Rinse with Salt Water
Gargling or gently rinsing with warm salt water solution can be helpful to alleviate pain and promote quicker healing after tooth extraction. Mix a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water and rinse your mouth gently, two or three times per day.
How rinsing with salt water can help after tooth extraction:
- Salt water helps to reduce swelling by drawing out excess fluid.
- A salt water rinse can help to soothe any pain or discomfort in the area of the extraction.
- Saltwater is a natural disinfectant and can help to prevent infection at the extraction site.
- Regular salt water rinses can help to promote faster healing of the extraction area.
Contact Your Dentist if You Experience Extreme Pain
It is normal to experience some pain or discomfort after surgery, but if you experience extreme pain, heavy bleeding, or fever, be sure to contact your dentist or oral surgeon immediately. They will provide necessary measures to alleviate the pain.
Why you should contact your dentist if the pain is unbearable after tooth extraction?
- Unbearable pain may indicate a more serious problem, such as infection or nerve damage.
- Your dentist can prescribe stronger pain medication to alleviate discomfort.
- Delaying treatment can lead to complications and delay the healing process.
- Your dentist can evaluate the area and provide additional treatment as needed to promote healing and prevent further pain.
Minimize Pain After a Tooth Extraction With the Help of a Trusted Dentist
Tooth extraction can be a painful experience, and it’s essential to minimize the pain during the recovery period. BellaVista Dental Care can provide you with the required guidance and support to make the process less painful.
We also offer advanced treatments to ensure a speedy recovery, so you can return to your normal activities in no time. Contact us today for more information about tooth extraction and medication.