How to Prepare for a Tooth Extraction Procedure

tooth extraction procedure

How to Prepare for a Tooth Extraction Procedure

If you’re in need of a tooth extraction procedure, it’s normal to feel a little overwhelmed. Properly preparing yourself for the procedure is a good way to reduce anxiety before your appointment. At Hicks Dental Group, we are committed to making our patients feel as comfortable as possible before any dental procedure. Continue reading to learn more about tooth extractions and how you should prepare. 

How to Prepare for a Tooth Extraction Procedure

Ask Questions in Advance

Don’t be afraid to ask your dentist any questions you have about the procedure. It’s a good idea to write down all questions that come to mind ahead of time, and bring the note to your consultation so you don’t forget anything. Getting some answers beforehand will help you understand exactly what to expect from the procedure and help you feel less anxious

Some examples of helpful questions to ask include:

  • What happens during a tooth extraction?
  • What type of anesthesia will the extraction require?
  • How long will the extraction procedure take?
  • What medications will be prescribed, if any?
  • How long will it take to heal afterward?

Share Your Medical History

When discussing the procedure with your dentist, it’s also important that you disclose your medical history. Let your dentist know about any prescription and non-prescription medications you take, as well as any medical conditions or diseases you have. Discussing your medical history is essential for preventing complications during the extraction.  

Talk to Your Insurance Company

Some medical and dental insurance plans will cover a portion of the cost of oral surgery. However, you should always double-check with your provider so you can avoid any unexpected bills and insurance claims. Discuss the cost of the procedure with your dentist in advance, then find out how much of the procedure your dental insurance will cover. You can request a written description of the tooth extraction procedure to share with your insurance provider so they can confirm whether or not they will cover it.  

Set Up Transportation Ahead of Time

The anesthesia from the extraction will leave you unable to drive immediately after the procedure. Make sure to arrange for a family member, friend, taxi, or rideshare service to drive you home after your procedure. It’s also a good idea to find out if any family or friends will be available to help care for you (or your kids or pets) after you arrive home, so you can focus on rest.

Do Not Eat Before the Surgery

Your dentist will let you know in advance that you cannot eat anything for 12 hours before your tooth extraction. You will also be unable to smoke for 12 hours before as well as 24 hours after the procedure. Following these instructions will reduce your risk of developing a dry socket after the extraction and ensure a better recovery. 

Dress Comfortably

To best remain comfortable during the procedure, do not wear tight-fitting clothing, contact lenses, jewelry, makeup, or strong scents like cologne or perfume. The best thing to wear is comfortable, loose-fitting clothing.

Plan Your Aftercare

Ask for your aftercare instructions ahead of time and plan accordingly. Stock your fridge with soft foods and pick up your medication in advance, or arrange for someone to do so for you the day of your appointment. You should also set up a comfortable place to rest lying down with your head propped up.

Aftercare instructions typically include:

  • Avoid hot foods and drinks
  • Eat soft foods for at least 24 hours
  • Ice your jaw for 10-15 minutes at a time
  • Do not use a straw, rigorously rinse your mouth, or spit
  • Brush and floss your teeth but do not brush over the extraction site
  • Avoid strenuous activities for a few days
  • Do not smoke for at least 24 hours

Gentle Dentist in Prescott

Whether you need a filling, crown, or tooth extraction procedure, contact Hicks Dental Group in Prescott, Arizona. We provide a wide variety of gentle dental procedures to restore your smile and protect your oral health. Call 928-445-6030 today to make an appointment. 

Images used under creative commons license – commercial use (3/16/2022). Photo by Atikah Akhtar on Unsplash