Our team at Dentistry for Children Virginia is focused on saving teeth and preserving healthy smiles. Sometimes, in order to restore a smile back to optimal oral health, a tooth extraction may be necessary. Your child’s dentist may decide a tooth extraction is necessary due to tooth decay, infection, dental injury, overcrowding, or orthodontic treatment. Our pediatric dentists will work to relieve your child’s dental pain and allow for bright and healthy smiles in the future.
About the Procedure
A simple tooth extraction procedure can be done right in the office with your dentist. To perform the extraction, your child’s dentist will first numb the extraction site with local anesthesia to help keep your child comfortable and pain-free. The dentist will then use an instrument called an elevator to loosen the tooth and then remove the tooth using forceps.
If the procedure is more serious or the tooth is impacted, your child’s dentist will recommend you to an oral surgeon for a surgical extraction. For this procedure, general anesthesia will be used so the surgeon can safely remove the impacted tooth without any pain.
After-Procedure Care for Children’s Tooth Extractions
Immediately following a tooth extraction procedure, help keep your child comfortable, and keep them from eating or drinking until the numbness subsides to avoid injury to the lip, tongue, or cheek. To help reduce bleeding from the extraction, have your child bite down on a piece of gauze to apply positive pressure and encourage clotting of the extraction site.
After the procedure, have your child eat only soft or lukewarm foods, such as mashed potatoes, smoothies, and lukewarm soup, and don’t use a straw for the first 24 hours. If any swelling is present, use an ice pack on the outside of the affected area to help reduce inflammation. For any pain, your child may take children’s ibuprofen or acetaminophen. If the pain is severe or does not subside after 24 hours, contact our office as soon as possible. Lastly, have your children brush and floss their teeth as usual to help maintain their healthy smile.
FAQs about Tooth Extractions
How Long is the Recovery Period?
Following an extraction procedure, it may take a few days for your child to fully recover. Have your child rest and avoid jumping back into their normal routine immediately. Encourage them to stay hydrated and eat soft, lukewarm foods, like pudding or mashed vegetables, to help them fully recover safely.
How to Reduce Swelling After a Tooth Extraction Procedure?
If there is swelling present following the procedure, hold an ice pack on the outside of the extraction site to help reduce the inflammation. Use the ice pack for 10 minutes at a time to safely help the swelling go down.
What Can be Eaten After a Tooth Extraction Procedure?
After a tooth extraction, have your child stick to soft, lukewarm foods to keep from disrupting the extraction site. Foods like mashed potatoes, smoothies, pudding, and lukewarm soups are great options to keep your child fueled while they recover.