After a dental extraction it is very important to preserve the blood clot in the extraction site in order for the socket to heal and to fill with some new healthy bone.
Loss of the blood clot can lead to a very serious and painful infection called “dry socket” which would have to be treated. It is important to take preventative measures toward dry socket immediately following the extraction.
After surgery avoid drinking from a straw or from a sports type bottle that requires sucking action as it can cause more bleeding and risk dislodging the blood clot.
Avoid excessive or forceful spitting after the surgery to avoid causing more bleeding from the extraction site.
Keeping your mouth clean is critical after extraction; you should however avoid vigorous rinsing as the action can dislodge the blood clot.
If you need to rinse your mouth do so very gently.
Smoking should be avoided at all costs after oral surgery because it delays healing, breaking down the clot and greatly increasing the risk of dry socket.
When your extraction is complete a surgical gauze pad will be kept in place over the extraction site and you will be asked to bite down to keep pressure over the socket for at least a half an hour. The pressure will help to control the bleeding from the socket and help to form the blood clot.