Your teeth can become damaged from an accident or other trauma, or by disease or decay. Extraction may be necessary to relieve a mouth crowded with teeth, or for an orthodontic or wisdom tooth procedure. In a simple extraction, your dentist will us an instrument called an elevator to loosen your tooth, before extracting it with a pair of forceps. A local anesthetic will be used to numb the area, and your dentist can take other steps to help you remain calm and relaxed during the appointment.
After the extraction, you can use a cold compress or an ice pack if you have any swelling. If the dentist has prescribed an antibiotic or a pain reliever, or if you are using an over-the-counter product, you should follow your dentist’s instructions.
Once you feel like eating again, stay with soft foods for around 72 hours, and chew on the opposite side of your mouth from the extraction site. During the first day after your extraction, you can brush your other teeth, but you should rinse the socket with warm water. Using a straw, smoking and spitting should be avoided. The reason for all of these instructions is that after the extraction, a blood clot will form over the socket to cover the exposed bone and nerves until the socket heals. It is important to keep that blood clot intact. Your dentist will schedule a follow-up appointment to check on your progress and to discuss options for replacing your tooth.
If you are experiencing pain or discomfort with your teeth, if you have some concerns about your oral health; or if it is time for your regular cleaning and exam, you can make an appointment to see our dentist, Dr. Ronald Levine at Blue Ribbon Dental by calling 301-540-8808. If you live in the Germantown, Maryland, area, we’ll be happy to schedule you for a visit as soon as possible.