The idea of getting a tooth pulled may be stressful. Thankfully, this highly common dental procedure can be pretty painless thanks to skilled dental experts, modern dental technology and gentle sedation services. After your tooth extraction, some discomfort is normal. There are things you can do to manage uncomfortable symptoms once you’re home.
Why Does It Hurt After a Tooth Extraction?
Pain is a normal part of recovery after getting a tooth pulled. Whether it’s your wisdom teeth or another type of extraction, you probably will feel some discomfort once sedation wears off. Don’t be worried. This is often a sign that your body is starting to heal.
Some of the most common types of pain after a tooth extraction include:
- Throbbing at the extraction site
- Gum sensitivity or swelling
- Headache or pain around your temples
- Neck or jaw tightness
- Sore throat
5 Pain Relief Techniques After a Tooth Extraction
Here are five at-home ways to relieve uncomfortable symptoms like gum pain or general discomfort if you’ve had your tooth pulled.
1. Take Oral Pain Relievers
After an extraction, your dentist may prescribe oral pain relievers. Taking recommended medications can provide a more painless recovery. There are also over-the-counter pills, such as ibuprofen or naproxen, that can help alleviate pain. These nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) reduce inflammation and the associated discomfort.
2. Reduce the Swelling With Ice
As your body’s immune system gets to work, you may experience swelling around the wound. Applying an ice pack against your cheek above the pain site for a few minutes constricts blood vessels, limiting blood flow and reducing swelling. Ice also numbs the ache.
3. Take Special Care of the Would Site
Blood clots naturally form after oral surgery. This is your body’s way to stop the bleeding, prevent infection and limit irritation. Take special care of the wound site to avoid displacing the blood clot, as this can cause dry socket.
Before you go home, your dentist will provide you with special instructions to aid the recovery process, including:
- Changing the gauze dressing
- Carefully brushing your teeth
- Opting for a chlorhexidine mouthwash instead of a toothbrush
- Cleansing with a saltwater solution
4. Eat Soft Foods
Don’t rush back to your everyday eating habits. Soft foods can ease pain and ensure the extraction site is not irritated. Avoid crunchy, salty or spicy foods. Instead, stick to a soft food diet, like:
- Mashed potatoes
After a couple of days, you can add other soft foods like cooked veggies or rice.
5. Avoid Painful Actions
Along with these pain relief techniques, a few activities can induce pain following your tooth extraction. These actions could dislodge the blood clot or lead to uncomfortable sensations. Things to avoid include:
- Rigorous activity
- Sucking motions, such as using a straw or smoking
- Poking the wound with your tongue
- Spitting or blowing your nose
Schedule Dental Services From Dr. Nahel Yanni
If you’re worried about getting your tooth pulled, choose a skilled dentist who can guide you through this procedure with sedation dentistry to ensure the process is as pain-free as possible. Dr. Nahel Yanni brings his experience and gentle dental services to patients throughout East Brunswick, New Jersey.
If you need a dental extraction, learn how we can help you. Schedule an appointment today.