Q:

What can you eat after a tooth extraction?

A:

For the first day or two after a tooth extraction, it is best to eat soft foods, recommends St. Louis County Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. After that, patients can eat any foods they feel comfortable having.

Soft foods recommended for the first few days after tooth extraction include yogurt, puddings, cool soups, mashed potatoes and ice cream, notes St. Louis County Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. It is best to avoid hard and crunchy foods for at least a week. Patients must not drink alcoholic beverages for 24 hours after general anesthesia, and they must avoid alcohol while taking pain medications.

For the first few days following surgery, oral surgeon Dr. Adam Hershkin advises patients to avoid using a straw and avoid eating foods that are very hot. He also warns patients against eating foods that may easily lodge in the socket, such as rice, nuts, seeds and popcorn. Skipping meals is not wise as regular nourishment helps the patient remain strong and healthy, and it promotes healing. It is not uncommon for nausea and vomiting to occur due to swallowing blood or the effects of anesthesia or pain medications. Dr. Hershkin recommends sipping flat cola or ginger ale and munching on soda crackers to help alleviate these symptoms.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How do you treat an infection following tooth extraction?

    A:

    An infection after a tooth extraction is treated using antibiotics, according to WebMD. While a tooth is typically extracted to prevent the spread of infection from a dead tooth, in some people, especially those with weakened immune systems, an infection results after the extraction. Patients can lessen chances of infection by following all aftercare recommendations from a dentist or oral surgeon and by seeking treatment promptly when an infection occurs.

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  • Q:

    How long does the pain last after a tooth extraction?

    A:

    According to New Health Guide, the pain after a tooth extraction normally subsides after two to three days. The pain begins to subside after 12 hours and is normally manageable using over-the-counter or prescription medication. Pain from a wisdom tooth extraction often takes the longest to subside.

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  • Q:

    How do you control bleeding after a tooth extraction?

    A:

    By applying pressure to the site of the extraction and exercising basic wound care, most people are able to stop bleeding entirely within about 24 hours following a tooth extraction. WebMD recommends additional measures to manage bleeding, reduce the risk of infection and speed up the process of recovery. If symptoms persist for longer than 24 hours, it is advisable to report them to a doctor or the oral surgeon who performed the procedure.

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  • Q:

    Why rinse your mouth with salt water after a tooth extraction?

    A:

    After any tooth extraction, patients should rinse the oral surgical area with warm salt water and a gentle swishing action to prevent infection and promote healing according to the International Dental Health Foundation. Rigorous brushing too soon following an extraction can cause more damage and slow healing.

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