After Tooth Extraction

Home Instructions After the Removal of a Single Tooth or teeth

Thank you for selecting our services for your oral health care needs. Some discomfort should be expected following oral surgery. To ensure the most comfortable and speedy recovery, we have put together some information to guide you through the next few days.


Some bleeding or redness in the saliva is normal for 24 hours. When you arrive home, replace the gauze with a new piece, biting firmly on the gauze continuously for 30 minutes.  Remove the gauze at the end of the 30 minute interval and discontinue using the gauze. You will continue to bleed slightly and this is a normal blood clotting process. If heavy bleeding continues please call us for further instructions.


Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. The majority of swelling occurs on the second and third days after surgery.  To minimize swelling, apply an ice bag, plastic bag, or towel filled with ice on the cheek in the area of surgery.  Ice may be applied to the area for up to 24 hours after surgery in intervals of 30 minutes “on” and 30 minutes “off”.  It is best to resume normal activities the day following surgery to help reduce the amount of swelling.


In some instances, bruising can occur near the surgical site or around the neck or jaw.  This is a normal, healthy response and there is nothing to be concerned about.


Local anesthesia is administrated during surgery (even with IV sedation).  Numbness in your mouth may last for several hours.  The muscles used to swallow and breathe will be working normally; however, it may seem difficult to swallow because your skin surfaces may be numb.


Removal all gauze before eating! Drink plenty of fluids.  Cool, soft foods and liquids should be eaten while the area is still numb (generally, the day of surgery).  After the numbness has subsided, you may eat warm, soft food (generally, the day after surgery).  Avoid crunchy, spicy, or chewy foods, as well as rice or food with small seeds.  Some cool, soft food ideas are: ice cream, yogurt, pudding, and milkshakes.  As for warm, soft food, we recommend: soups, macaroni and cheese, eggs, pancakes, and mashed potatoes.  Be sure to eat before taking any of the prescribed medications to prevent an upset stomach.  Return to a normal diet as soon as possible unless otherwise directed.


The sutures used in the extraction site will dissolve.  They will come out on their own in 3-10 days.


Light to moderate exercise the day following surgery will help reduce swelling and help you feel well.  Get up, move around, take a shower, and participate in normal activities as much as possible.


Sleep with your head slightly elevated.  Use an extra pillow.  The prescribed pain medications may make you feel sleepy.


If you were prescribed antibiotics, continue taking them as directed and until they are all gone to help prevent infection.


Temperature elevation can occur following oral surgery.  If your temperature rises above 100OF, take a fever reducer such as Tylenol (acetaminophen) or Motrin/Advil (ibuprofen) every 4-6 hours until the fever subsides.


Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing.  The day after surgery, the prescribed Peridex mouth rinse (which may cause staining to teeth and tongue that hygienist can remove, staining less likely if you brush your teeth prior to use) should be used twice daily, after breakfast and before bed.  Be sure to rinse for at least 30 seconds then spit it out. Warm salt rinses (teaspoon of salt in a cup or warm water) should be used at least 4-5 times a day, as well, especially after meals.  Brush your teeth!  Just be gentle with brushing the surgical areas.


Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery.  If you are considering exercise, throbbing or bleeding may occur.  If this occurs, you should discontinue exercise.  Light to moderate exercise the day following surgery will help you feel better and will minimize any swelling you may have.


Partial dentures, flippers, and full dentures may be used immediately after surgery unless otherwise indicated.



The day of surgery, do not brush your teeth or the implant site, rinse your mouth, or spit excessively.

The exception to this rule is if you become nauseated. If you are nauseated, a clear soda (7-Up, Sprite, or ginger ale) is helpful if sipped slowly.  Do not use diet drinks!

Please feel free to call our office at Austin Office Phone Number 512-258-1636 if you have any questions or concerns.