September 14, 2021
A children’s tooth extraction in Palm Harbor may not be what you hoped to hear when taking your child to the dentist, but it’s now a reality. Whether it is damage or decay that is the reason for this procedure, you need to know how you can help them through the healing process once they’re back home. In preparation for the days and weeks following their tooth removal, here are four things you can do to ensure your child has a swift and successful recovery.
Help Them Be Aware of Their Numbness
Depending on the age of your child, they may or may not be able to express how numb they are. You may need to instruct them to touch their lip or do it yourself while asking if they can feel it. Waiting to offer food or drinks until after the numbness goes away will help prevent the possibility of them accidentally biting their tongue or lip. Because not all children receive the same type of anesthesia and/or sedation, the duration of their numbness will vary.
Watch Out for Dry Sockets
Anytime there is a hole left behind from oral surgery, the concern is that your child does not develop a dry socket. The blood clot that must form is necessary to ensure proper healing, so if it becomes dislodged, it will not only be painful but also put your child at risk for a possible infection. Paying close attention can help to reduce the possibility of this happening, but you’ll need to make sure they don’t use a straw, spit, vigorously rinse their mouth, or engage in strenuous activity for at least 24 hours.
Offer Only Soft Foods and Liquids
One to two days after your child’s tooth extraction, you can slowly begin to incorporate solid foods as long as they are comfortable and able to eat them. Until then, it is best to serve only liquids and soft foods (i.e., lukewarm mashed potatoes, soup, yogurt, oatmeal, etc.). This will alleviate any potential pressure eating and chewing can cause and allow for better healing. Once they begin to consume solid food items, you’ll need to remind them to avoid chewing on the side that had the tooth removed.
Help Them Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
For the first 24 hours after surgery, your child can bypass their oral hygiene routine. Once a full day has passed, you will need to help them maneuver around their surgical site. Brushing and flossing their other teeth should remain the same, but it will require gentle and careful cleaning in and around the vacated socket. They can also rinse with warm saltwater to thoroughly cleanse their oral cavity. It is also known to help with the healing process.
A pediatric dentist in Palm Harbor will never recommend the removal of a tooth if it’s not absolutely necessary. Should your child be recommended for this type of treatment, understand their dentist will take every precaution to keep them safe and comfortable while also providing you with the necessary instructions to ensure their positive recovery at home.
About the Author
Dr. Maggie Davis is a board-certified pediatric dentist and diplomate in the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. She and Dr. Lorielle Alter lead a team of professional hygienists, assistants, and administrative staff who are committed to administering safe and effective treatment to children of all ages. When the removal of a tooth is necessary, Dr. Davis ensures optimal comfort throughout the procedure while also providing parents with valuable information designed to encourage swift healing. If you’re preparing for your child’s tooth extraction and need additional assistance, call our office at (727) 786-7551 or visit our website.
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