If you’re a smoker and you need a tooth extraction, you may be wondering if you can keep smoking cigarettes after your tooth is pulled at Skylyn Dental Associates. The answer is “no!” You definitely need to avoid smoking as directed by Dr. Paul Gibas after your tooth extraction in Spartanburg. Why? Read on and find out why it’s so important to stop smoking after your tooth has been pulled.
At the bare minimum, you should avoid smoking for at least 72 hours once you’ve had a tooth extraction. Why? The main reason is that this helps promote proper healing. When your tooth is pulled, a blood clot formed from “fibroblasts” begins to form in the socket where your missing tooth used to be.
This blood clot is the scaffolding that healthy gum and bone tissue will grow over in order to heal after your extraction. And if you smoke after your extraction, the sucking action of inhaling a cigarette can dislodge this blood clot, causing a condition called “dry socket.” This can cause lots of pain, slow down the healing process, and even require you to come to Skylyn Dental Associates for follow-up treatment.
Smoking isn’t the only thing that can dislodge this blood clot, either. Anything that puts suction on your mouth should be avoided. So, for example, you shouldn’t drink using a straw for at least 72 hours, or spit forcefully. These actions can also dislodge your blood clot and cause “dry socket.”
So, what will happen if you smoke right after you have your tooth extracted? We’ve already discussed the risk of dry socket. But even if you don’t accidentally dislodge your blood clot, smoking after a tooth extraction is a bad idea.
Why? Because tobacco smoke is toxic. Smoking tobacco damages cells and tissue in your mouth, and this is particularly bad when your body is trying to heal a wound, like the area where you’ve had a tooth extraction. Smoking decreases nutrient and blood flow to the area, which slows down the healing process.
That means that it will take longer for you to heal, and you’ll feel more pain and discomfort as you heal. Also, since tobacco use means that it takes longer to heal, you have a higher risk of developing an infection as you heal.
For all of these reasons, you should definitely avoid smoking for at least three days after your extraction. Stopping for a week, two weeks, or completely quitting smoking are even better options for protecting your oral health.
Did you know that smoking is one of the most common contributing to tooth loss? Male smokers are 3.6 times more likely to lose teeth, and female smokers are 2.5 times more likely to lose their teeth.
In other words, quitting smoking is one of the best things you can do for your oral health. Not only will you heal more quickly after your tooth extraction, but you may avoid the need for future tooth extractions.
At Skylyn Dental Associates, Dr. Paul Gibas practices conservative dentistry. This means that he will not recommend tooth extractions unless he believes they are truly necessary to protect your oral health. Even if you think that you may need an extraction, it may be possible to save your tooth with an alternative treatment, like root canal therapy.
So if you think you need a tooth extraction in Spartanburg, don’t wait. Contact Skylyn Dental Associates online or give us a call at (864) 573-9255 for a consultation with Dr. Gibas, and you can learn more about your options for pulling or saving your tooth.