If you’ve been ignoring a painful tooth or one that’s decaying, it is best to deal with it sooner rather than later. Developments in the dental field have made tooth removal and post-tooth extraction pain much easier to manage than before. With the option of sedation during the procedure, painkillers to manage the recovery and an expert managing the procedure, you don’t have to dread a tooth extraction anymore.
There are a variety of reasons that your tooth may need to be extracted. If this is the case, your dentist should be able to advise if tooth extraction is the best course of action. If you require a tooth removed, it’s likely the relief offered by removing the problem will far eclipse the temporary pain from removal.
Generally, a tooth is extracted when there is bone loss due to gum disease or when the tooth is not salvageable.
Preparing for extraction
Tooth extraction procedures are fairly straightforward. In the hands of an expert, you will feel minimal discomfort and pain. Before the procedure be sure to give your dentist your complete medical history including any medications you’ve taken, anything you’re allergic to and any health conditions you have.
Since there is a risk for infection, you may have to take antibiotics before and after the extraction. During the extraction you can be sedated either orally with a tablet or through an IV (the latter is done by a specialist anaesthetist).
Care after extraction
Tooth extraction aftercare involves rest and watching what you eat. There is likely to be swelling and the amount of swelling will depend on the number of extractions you’ve had. The swelling will take a week to subside and peaks at around the 48-hour mark. Use an ice pack to reduce the swelling . Most people do feel discomfort for a few days or so but this can be managed by prescribed pain medication.
You should eat soft foods like soups and mashed dishes that do not require much chewing. Don’t eat hot or cold foods to minimise irritation. Do this until the site has healed completely.
Avoid brushing the area to reduce the risk of infection and follow your dentists instructions regarding salt or mouth washes.