dental-exam-smallA tooth extraction or pulling a tooth is the removal of a tooth from its socket in the bone. There are certain situations where the dentist will try to fix or save a tooth that has been broken or damaged by decay, by filling, crown or other treatment. However, if there’s too much damage for the tooth to be repaired, it needs to be extracted. A very loose tooth will also require extraction if it cannot be saved.

After an extraction:

It is important to keep pressure on the area where the extraction was done for about 30 minutes after the procedure. This can be done with the gauze given at the office. If the site bleeds again, have the child bite on a wet gauze for about 10 minutes.

After an extraction, swelling may occur due to your child biting the area that was given anesthesia without realizing it. Place ice packs on your child’s face to reduce the swelling. Place it on for about 20 minutes and remove for 20 minutes. Have the child eat soft and cool foods for a few days. A gentle rinse with warm water that is started 24 hours after the extraction, can help to keep the area clean. Use one-half teaspoon of salt in a cup of water to rinse. Most swelling and bleeding resolve within a day or two. Initial healing takes at least two weeks.