Every tooth is covered by enamel. It’s a hard mineralized substance that protects the softer layer of dentin underneath, and the even softer nerve center called the pulp. Without strong enamel, decay could easily destroy the good health of a tooth. That’s why fluoride is so important. It gets absorbed into tooth enamel to strengthen it and help it resist decay.
There are three situations which may cause the need for a tooth to be pulled out:
- there is not enough room for it to grow and it will become impacted
- to ensure that the rest of your teeth grow in proper alignment
- the tooth is severely decayed and is beyond restoration.
But given its benefits, tooth extraction can also be very painful and involves an elaborate recovery process.
Tooth extraction complications rarely occur; among them are dry socket, persistent pain, infection and excessive bleeding. Pain is the most common. Proper care after a procedure promotes healing and often avoids infection.
It is very essential to take good care of yourself after oral surgery. Resting and refraining from strenuous physical activities a few days after a procedure can reduce possible complications. Exercise is not advisable for at least a week. You should also take prescribed medications to prevent experiencing other problems. Antibiotics are often given to avoid infections.
Proper nutrition is also equally important to help you heal. For at least a couple of days after the procedure, follow high-protein soft diet. Increase your intake of water and fruit juices. Avoid hot food for the first 24 hours after surgery because this promotes bleeding. Normal diet may be resumed after a couple of days.
HOW TO CONTROL BLEEDING
Excessive bleeding can be prevented by softly biting onto a piece of cotton ball or gauze for at least 30 minutes after oral surgery. It is important not to rinse, not to smoke, nor drink using a straw within 24 hours after the procedure. After the 24-hour period, you may brush your teeth using warm salt water solution (1/2 teaspoon salt in 1/2 cup warm water).
If bleeding persists, place a cold cotton ball or gauze pad or teabag over the area and bite firmly for at least another 30 minutes. Avoid rubbing the area with your tongue. When lying down, use several pillows to keep your head elevated, or use a lounge chair.