Complex tooth extraction | post-treatment advice

It is important to follow the instructions below to speed healing. Note that some discomfort and swelling are normal after surgery.

Day of surgery

  • Keep the compresses in your mouth for 20 minutes, applying firm pressure. Change the pads as needed.
  • Keep your head elevated at all times.
  • Apply ice to your cheek at regular intervals for the first 24 hours (20 minutes of ice every hour).
  • If excessive bleeding occurs, bite down on a gauze pad or lightly moistened tea bag for 20 minutes.
  • Bleeding and colored saliva are normal.
  • Limit your physical activity. Rest.


  • Don’t dislodge the blood clot that has formed as it helps the healing process.
  • Don’t eat anything before the bleeding stops.
  • Don’t drink through a straw.
  • Don’t rinse your mouth or spit.
  • Don’t smoke or drink alcohol.
  • Don’t brush near the area of the extracted tooth for the first 72 hours.

All of these instructions are to prevent the blood clot from falling out of the extraction site.


  • During the first 72 hours you can take Advil or Motrin or any of the medication that was prescribed to you. Avoid Aspirin.
  • If you were prescribed antibiotics, continue to take them for the specified time period even if the symptoms are gone.


Eat only soft foods or lukewarm liquids the day of the extraction. Resume your normal eating habits as soon as you are able.

The day after until full healing

  • Rinse your mouth four times a day with a warm salt water solution (1 teaspoon of salt in 1 cup of warm water).
  • Brush your teeth and floss daily to remove plaque and ensure the best long term results. Don’t brush near the area of the extracted tooth for the first 72 hours.
  • There may be some bruising on the skin. This will disappear in five to seven days.
  • You may have trouble opening your mouth or speaking. This should subside within four to five days.
  • Most of the swelling will take place during the first 3 days and then begin to diminish. It is important not to feel heat on your cheek after the 3 days.
  • If the pain increases after three days or your cheek feels hot, call our office.

You will feel better after a few days and can resume your normal activities. If you experience heavy bleeding, pain, continued swelling for two to three days or have a negative reaction to the medication, call us at (450) 669-7421.