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Healing Expectations after Tooth Extraction

When a tooth is damaged beyond repair, or it has become too infected to save, the tooth will need to be extracted by a dentist. The tooth extraction process is often a simple one, but problems may occur after the procedure if the area where the extraction took place is not
allowed to properly heal. This is why it’s important to understand the healing process of a tooth extraction.

Why You May Need an Extraction

Tooth extractions involve the removal of a damaged tooth or teeth. This damage may be due to an injury that was sustained, or poor oral hygiene that has compromised the tooth or teeth. Whatever the case may be, foregoing a tooth extraction can lead to a whole host of different oral health issues, including:

  • Gum Disease
  • Tooth Decay
  • Extreme Pain
  • Infection

If you have a broken, decayed or infected tooth, make sure to schedule a visit with your dentist as soon as possible. If they can save the tooth, they will. If not, they will have to extract the tooth. It’s important to keep in mind that the longer you go without repairing a damaged tooth,
the higher the risk will be that the tooth will need to be pulled.

The Extraction Process

The process of tooth extraction is often simple, and involves a dentist using a special tool to pull a damaged tooth. There are other times (such as with the removal of wisdom teeth), in which surgery is required. The surgery involves a dentist cutting open the gums, then removing the
tooth or teeth that need to be extracted. The areas are then sewn up so they can properly heal.

The Healing Process

Once your tooth or teeth have been pulled, both the gums and bone tissue need to heal. While the gums may fully heal within a few weeks, the bone may take 6 to 8 months to fully heal. If the tooth is not replaced, the jawbone will begin to deteriorate. A bone graft may help to avoid
deterioration of the jaw bone tissue while the bone heals. From there, an implant can be placed.


In order to make sure the gums heal properly, it is important to take proper care of your teeth and gums after the extraction. This includes proper brushing, flossing and rinsing (although you will need to take it easy while brushing and flossing after the procedure). Generally, you’ll want to wait until 24 hours after the procedure to begin brushing. You will also want to avoid extremely hot foods, as well as sucking through a straw. Finally, you’ll want to go at least 72 hours without smoking.

Ask Your Dentist About Aftercare

Make sure to ask your dentist any specific questions about the aftercare process. They will be happy to give you any information that you may need, and to answer your questions. Also feel free to ask what steps you can take to avoid a tooth extraction procedure in the future.

If you're in need of tooth extraction and live or around the Lynnwood, WA area, contact Meadowdale Dental Clinic Today!

Interested in learning more about tooth extraction? Here's information wisdom teeth extraction.