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Tooth Extractions in Langhorne, PA
Your third molars are more commonly called "wisdom teeth." Usually appearing in the late teens or early twenties, third molars often lack the proper space in the jaw to erupt fully or even at all. This common condition is called impaction. When any tooth lacks the space to come through or simply develops in the wrong place of your jaw and becomes impacted, problems can arise. Primarily, damage to adjacent teeth and crowding occur.
In certain cases, the wisdom tooth that cannot come through becomes inflamed under the gums and in the jawbone, causing a sac to develop around the root of the tooth that then fills with liquid. This can cause a cyst or an abscess if it becomes infected. If either of these situations goes untreated, serious damage to the underlying bone and surrounding teeth and tissues can result.
Post-operative Care for a Tooth Extraction
While you are still in the dental office:
- Sit still for a few minutes immediately after the appointment. You want to be sure that a blood clot has formed before you get up and around, because you could provoke bleeding. The amount of time you need to sit still varies with the type. If this was a baby tooth that was close to coming out on its own, you may only need one or two minutes of sitting still. For the simple removal of an adult tooth, you may need to sit for about ten minutes. For a surgical extraction in which stitches were necessary, it could be half an hour or longer. This amount of time could be longer if you tend to bleed longer than most people.
- You will be biting on a gauze while you are waiting. This keeps pressure on the site and assists in stopping the bleeding.
Advice on what to do after you leave the dental office:
- After you leave the office, you should be somewhat still, without strenuous activity, for about two hours. Don't suck or spit, as this will inhibit the formation of a blood clot.
- Some persistent bleeding is normal. Expect your saliva to be tinged with blood for several hours.
- However, if you notice thick bleeding with dark red blood clots, you need to apply more pressure to the site. Most dental offices give you a pack of gauze in case this occurs. If you don't have gauze, use a paper towel. Wad it up so it puts pressure directly on the site, and bite on it for a good forty-five minutes. If the bleeding still hasn't stopped, repeat this. If it still doesn't stop, call the dentist or go to the hospital emergency room.
- For pain, after a simple extraction, you should be able to just take Tylenol or ibuprofen, or another over-the-counter pain remedy.