If your child needs to have a tooth removed, understanding how long tooth extraction pain can last and what to do once you get back home is important. Whether you’re having a routine extraction with a pediatric dentist in Brighton or are planning a wisdom tooth removal surgery, here are four ways to help your child (or teen) through their recovery.
The First 1-2 Hours
During the first couple of hours after your child’s extraction, you want to be sure to keep clean gauze applied with firm pressure. This can be done by having your child bite down on the gauze to hold it in place. As the gauze becomes saturated, change it out with a new piece (we will provide you with an after-care kit.)
After you leave the office or before you arrive, be sure to stop by the pharmacy to fill any prescriptions. Such as those for antibiotics or pain relievers. You will want to begin giving these to your child as directed as soon as they return home.
Once you’re back at the house, make an ice pack or cold compress for your child. Have them apply it to that side of their face for 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off. This can be repeated for the next several hours if needed.
Day One of Recovery: Lots of Rest
For the rest of the day, have your child sit upright in a chair or recliner. It’s fine to have a few pillows propped behind them so that they can slightly recline, but their head needs to stay upright for the most part.
Be sure to keep water on hand so that your child can stay hydrated. Do not allow your child to drink through a straw or any type of cup/bottle where sucking is required as this can cause a dry socket. Sipping from a cup or water bottle with a screw-on lid is perfectly fine.
We’ll provide you with special instructions on how to clean around the extraction site, depending on the type of dental extraction your child needed. It isn’t uncommon to avoid brushing that area and rinsing with warm saltwater after meals to remove any food debris.
Day Two: Take Things Easy
The day or two after your child’s dental extraction, they will probably want to go back to regular activities. While heading to school may be ok, you’ll want to remind them to take things easy. Be sure to pack soft foods for lunch and have them avoid any crunchy snacks, which might irritate the extraction site. Ask that they sit out of any athletic activities, such as PE or sports practices, so that the blood clot inside of the extraction site doesn’t come loose.
How many tooth extractions can be done at once will impact your child’s schedule. If they had multiple teeth removed, they may need at least a week before resuming normal activities. On the other hand, oral surgeries like wisdom tooth removal will still require several more days of rest and recovery.
If your child is taking any medications such as pain relievers, they may not need them after about day three. How long tooth extraction pain lasts can vary from child to child, but 1-3 days is typical.
The Rest of the Week
How long tooth extraction pain lasts will vary from child to child. A teen getting their wisdom teeth removed may need 1-2 weeks to recover (at least a week out of school). Whereas a child having a primary tooth extracted will typically be back to normal within a few days.
Listen to your parenting instincts and allow your child to move at their own pace. If they still feel sore after several days, it’s important to reach out to a family or pediatric dentist in Brighton for advice. In most cases, Kids City Dental will have your child return for a post-op follow up if it is a complex extraction such as wisdom tooth removal surgery. Otherwise, they can typically get back to their normal routine as soon as they’re ready!