Smoking After Tooth Extractions

After having major oral surgery, one of the first things a dental professional will ask you to do is to stop tobacco use. Along with tobacco use, dentists also recommend to not chew on extremely hard foods as well as to avoid drinking with a straw.

For an avid smoker, it can be tough to stop the use of tobacco, even if it’s only for a little while. It is highly recommended to prevent the use of tobacco and refrain from smoking for at least 72 hours after a tooth extraction.

When a patient undergoes a tooth extraction procedure, the dentist will close up the extraction site typically with dissolvable internal stitches. If a patient decides to smoke or to do any of the things listed above, they will be risking the chance of breaking the stitches. Once anything obstructs the stitches, the healing process will be delayed and may cause healing complications.

Refraining from tobacco use will be needed for an eve longer amount of time if this occurs.

Why Do I Need to Stop Smoking After a Tooth Extraction?

Many patients don’t realize the use of tobacco is one of the top ways to slow down the healing process after a tooth extraction. There are chemical toxins in cigarettes and tobacco chew that can slow down the healing process in general. In addition to the chemicals in tobacco not helping, also the motion of sucking onto a cigarette is not good for an open wound after a tooth extraction. Smoking a cigarette can cause the expulsion of newly formed blood clots. These blood clots are needed for the extraction site to properly heal. It is the first step to healing, and if it is disrupted, it will slow down the healing process.
The above activities can cause a series of issues, from slowing down the healing process, increased risk of infection, and dry sockets. Dry sockets can lead to pain all across the face and can cause extreme inflammation, bad breath smell, and difficulty opening the mouth.

Many dental professionals will say that this is a good start to stop smoking if the patient intends to in the future. It can be hard to stop smoking, but if there is a needed reason that could help speed up the healing process after oral surgery, why not try?

After a surgical tooth extraction, such as the removal of wisdom teeth that haven’t grown in past the gum line, the healing process must be cared for. A smoker cannot continue to smoke after this type of surgery especially as there is an extremely high chance that he or she will interrupt or compromise the normal healing of the surgical site. If infection develops due to problems with healing then it can be very painful and lead to a delay in the healing process.

After a tooth extraction, it is wise to avoid all tobacco products for at least 72 hours. That is the minimum recommended time. However, it can be longer if you wish to recover faster from the surgery.

Interested in talking to Dr. Baer and his team at Baer Dental Designs about Tooth Extractions? Get more information on our services here.

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