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TIPS: Oral care post tooth extraction

It is normal for the gum area and mouth to be tender for the first few days. Taking special care of your gums and teeth is essential to reduce pain and further damage. Tips to ensure the best oral health.

health and fitness Updated: Jan 27, 2012 00:55 IST

Taking special care of your gums and teeth is essential to reduce pain and further damage. Tips to ensure the best oral health.

1 Take it easy: It is normal for the gum area and mouth to be tender for the first few days. Don’t exercise for at least 12 to 24 hours. If you want to lie down, for the first night following surgery, keep your head up with pillows. Do not bend over or do heavy lifting for at least a week.

2 Bleeding control: Your dentist would let you know how to control any bleeding. Usually, a gauze pad will be placed on the area, and try and keep firm pressure on it. Change the dressing about every 30 to 45 minutes, depending on the amount of bleeding.

3 Rinse carefully: After 24 hours, gently rinse four times a day, using warm salt water. Do not spit out forcefully. Be careful not to dislodge the blood clot when brushing near the extraction area, for at least three to four days.

4 Ease your mouth: After 24 hours, gently stretch your mouth open to get it moving again. Talk as less as you can, and eat in moderation.

5 Soft food: Stick to a liquid or soft food diet for the first two days. Avoid hot food or drinks until the numbing wears off. You cannot feel pain while the gum is numb and this may burn your mouth.

6 Avoid smoking and alcohol: Do not smoke for at least the rest of the day. Avoid alcohol for 24 hours, as it could delay the healing process.

inputs from Dr Sameer Sachdev