Tooth Extraction Aftercare

Instructions for Home Care Following the Extraction (Removal) of a Tooth
  • The anaesthetic typically leaves your lips, teeth and tongue feeling numb after the appointment. For this reason, you should avoid chewing for two hours following surgery, or until the numbness has completely worn off.
  • Some discomfort after the extraction is normal. An over-the-counter pain reliever, such as ibuprofen or paracetamol (not aspirin), is usually sufficient. We can also give you a prescription for a stronger pain reliever, if needed.
  • To avoid nausea, do not take pain medication on an empty stomach.
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  • You can also decrease pain and swelling by applying an ice pack – 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off – for the first six hours following the extraction.
  • A blood clot will form on the extraction site, and this clot is vital to the healing process. To keep the clot intact, avoid touching the extraction site with your tongue or fingers, do not drink liquids through a straw, and do not spit vigorously.
  • Blowing your nose or sneezing violently can also dislodge the blood clot and impair healing, so if you have an upper respiratory infection or suffer from allergies, be sure to have the appropriate sinus medication on hand.
  • Do not rinse your mouth for 48 hours.
  • Smoking, or allowing food particles to pack into the tooth’s socket, should be avoided, as both will significantly affect the healing process.
  • 24 hours following the procedure, you should rinse gently with a warm salt water solution (dissolve one teaspoon of salt with one cup of warm water); gently swish the solution around the affected area, and spit carefully. You should do this 2-3 times each day for the week following the extraction.
  • If antibiotics were prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length of time, even if all symptoms and signs of infection are gone.
  • Relax as much as possible and avoid all strenuous activities for the first 24 hours following surgery.
  • Once the numbness has worn off, you should eat, as nourishment is important to the healing process. Limit your diet to soft foods like yoghurt, soft soups, ice cream, or soft-cooked eggs for the first 48 hours.
  • Drink at least eight large glasses of water or fruit juice each day.
  • Keep your head elevated with pillows to control bleeding. We will give you “bite packs” in case you get bleeding later. Please bite gently but firmly for 20 minutes until the bleeding stops. You can also bite gently but firmly on a moist tea bag for 20 minutes. Be sure to call our practice if bleeding persists or increases.
  • Be sure to brush and floss the other areas of your mouth as you would normally.
  • The space left by the tooth will feel a bit strange to you at first. Eventually, new bone and gum tissue will grow into the gap left by the extraction.

It is important to consider replacing missing teeth to avoid adjacent teeth (if present) moving and impairing chewing function. We will advise you about suitable treatment options. Teeth can replaced by Dental implants, Dental Bridges or Cosmetic Dentures.

Dry Socket
Dry socket is an infection in your tooth socket after a tooth is extracted. The condition usually develops when a blood clot fails to form in the socket, or if the blood clot comes loose. Dry socket occurs in approximately five percent of all tooth extractions.

Normally, the blood clot that forms after a tooth is removed promotes healing, laying the foundation for the growth of new bone tissue. When dry socket occurs, this blood clot is lost and the infected, inflamed socket appears empty – hence the name.

You may not have symptoms until three to five days after the extraction. Then, the condition will manifest itself as severe pain that doesn’t subside, often accompanied by what feels like an earache. You may also have an unpleasant taste in your mouth, and bad breath.

Call our practice right away if you notice any symptoms of dry socket and we can help you by placing a special pain relieving dressing in the socket, and giving you antibiotics.

If you any concerns regarding dental treatment or cosmetic dentistry do not hesitate Perfect Smile Spa on or email

Perfect Smile Spa is one of UK's leading cosmetic dentistry clinic. At Perfect Smile Spa the cosmetic dentists specialise in all aspects of dentistry..