If you’re a smoker and you need a tooth extraction in Baltimore, you may be wondering if you’ll have to make any changes to your lifestyle as you heal and recover. Can you smoke after a tooth extraction? If not, how long do you have to wait before you can begin smoking again? Get all the details you need in this blog from Waterfront Dental.
You Shouldn’t Smoke After A Tooth Extraction – And Here’s Why!
First, no. You can’t smoke after a tooth extraction. There are a few reasons why smoking should be avoided right after your surgery at Waterfront Dental.
- Increased pain and discomfort – Smoking irritates your extraction site, particularly when it’s still fresh and unhealed. Smoking after your extraction will cause significant pain and irritation, which is a major reason why you should avoid using tobacco after your surgery.
- Risk of dislodging blood clot – When you get a tooth extraction, a blood clot forms in the empty socket, and this must remain in place to ensure the tooth heals quickly and properly. The action of sucking on a cigarette or a cigar can create suction that loosens the clot and pushes it out of place.
The result is “dry socket” - A painful condition that interferes with healing, causes a lot of pain, and often requires a follow-up to clean and disinfect the extraction site. This is the most important reason to avoid smoking after your surgery.
- Reduced blood flow and healing – Even if the blood clot remains in place, smoking interferes with healing. It restricts the blood supply to the gums and mouth and also reduces blood oxygen because smoke interferes with the “hemoglobin” proteins that help deliver oxygen through your blood.
Don’t Smoke For 5-7 Days After Your Extraction – And Consider Quitting!
Most dentists recommend a minimum of 5 days of smoking cessation after your extraction, and avoiding smoking for at least a week will ensure that your mouth heals properly. As it happens, this means that getting a tooth extraction is the perfect time to consider quitting smoking altogether!
Most people who quit smoking report that the first 5-7 days are the hardest part of quitting, so if you can manage to avoid smoking for this long, you have a good chance of being able to break the habit completely.
Switching to nicotine gum and patches can help you curb cravings as you quit. If you’re very interested in quitting smoking after your tooth extraction, we also recommend consulting with your physician for more information. They can provide advice on how to quit, and even prescribe certain drugs that may help you cope with cravings and quit smoking successfully.
Protect Your Mouth – Avoid Smoking After Tooth Extraction
Smoking is bad for your oral health and your overall health, and can be particularly harmful as you recover from a tooth extraction. So make sure you follow Dr. Merguerian’s instructions after your extraction, and avoid smoking for 5-7 days.
Got a troublesome tooth in Baltimore? We’re here to help. At Waterfront Dental, Dr. Merguerian can examine your mouth, diagnose your condition, and explain whether an extraction is the right procedure for relieving your pain and discomfort. Call today at (410) 505-0551 or contact us online to schedule your appointment now.