Dental Education Lecture: Care Of The Mouth After Extractions 

*   Do not use straw or RINSE mouth vigorously for 24 hours.  However, you need to rinse your mouth with warm salted water often if you have had an abscess and the doctor has made an incision to drain it. During wound healing, you still need to brush your teeth, gently and as much as possible, but away from extraction area

*   KEEP FINGERS AND TONGUE away from the socket

*   BLEEDING. Some bleeding 24 hours following tooth extractions is to be expected.  If unusual, place a wet sterile gauze pad (or a wet tea bag if the gauzes run out) firmly over the site of extraction, and bite down or hold in place with pressure for 20 minutes.  Repeat if necessary.  Avoiding strenuous exercises may reduce post-extraction bleeding

*   AVOID drinking hot liquids

*   SWELLING. Use a plastic bag or towel filled with ice against affected area for 10 minutes on and 10 minutes off for ONE hour. Swelling may start after tooth is removed but is no cause for alarm.    Swelling is particularly obvious on the 2nd and 3rd days after lower wisdom tooth extraction

*   FOOD. Light diet is advisable during the first 24 hours after simple extraction or several weeks after lower wisdom tooth extraction, particularly over age of 40

*   NEXT DAY rinse mouth with a half teaspoon of table salt in an 8 ounce glass of very warm water, after meals. Repeat for the next two or three days if necessary

*   BONY EDGES. After teeth are extracted, the patient may feel hard projections in the mouth and think they are roots. This is usually the hard bony partition, which surrounds the roots of the teeth. This generally breaks away, works itself out or may need a minor surgery  

*   If antibiotics are prescribed, take a full amount of medication, even though symptoms have disappeared.  Caution for female patients: antibiotics can interfere with effectiveness of oral contraceptives.  Use other contraceptive measures if applicable

*   In case of unusual symptoms, call the office at once (770-814-2212) 

*   FOR DENTURE PATIENTS. Please be aware that after extractions, your gums will shrink in time. When this occurs, you will need a reline of the denture

*   FOR IMMEDIATE DENTURE PATIENTS. Your immediate denture acts like a bandage. Please wear it all the time until you return to the clinic next day.  After this, clean the denture and dip into a cup of water before bedtime. In other word, donít wear the denture at night (except the first night after extraction).  Your gums need a rest 


Xin Wei, DDS, PhD, MS 1st edition 02/15/2009, last revision 09/29/2012