Extraction & Post-Operative Care


  • Bite firmly on gauze pack that has been placed until you arrive home, or for at least one hour, then remove it gently.  If after removal, bleeding begins again, place another damp gauze pack directly over the tooth socket and bite firmly for 30 minutes.
  • Biting on a tea bag that has been moistened and wrapped in a piece of gauze also helps stop bleeding.  It is not unusual to have a slight oozing for up  to 24 hours.  Any bleeding that fills the mouth in a few minutes should be reported immediately.
  • For 24 hours avoid vigorous rinsing, use of straws (suction), or smoking, as this may disrupt the clot and delay healing.


Some discomfort is normal after surgery. Tylenol or ibuprofen can be sufficient for routine extractions.  Other prescription medications may be needed. In any case, begin medication before the anesthesia wears off and take as directed.


Soft foods are likely in order; it is best to try to get adequate nutrition.

Oral hygiene

Do not rinse your mouth or brush your teeth for the first 24 hours after surgery.  After that, rinse your mouth with warm salt water (1/2 teaspoon salt in 8 oz warm water) every 4 hours. Brush your teeth, but avoid the area of surgery.  A moistened cotton swab may be more comfortable in that area.


Using ice packs can help with swelling.  Hold on indirectly for 20 minutes and then 5 minutes off, continuing for first 24 hours.

Dry sockets

Complications of clotting and healing are called dry sockets.  The exact cause is not known.  If pain starts 2-3 days postoperatively, please contact the office.  Dressing and treatment can ease the discomfort.