Swelling After Extractions

Once you have received oral surgery for any reason at all, you should be aware that there will be a certain amount of swelling involved. The things that confuses people is to know to what extent the swelling is acceptable and from which point it should be considered a problem, and when to seek medical help. 


Swelling should start immediately after the surgery, and can be quite extensive, there is no way to tell that it is a sign of an infection or just the bodies natural defense mechanism until about 2-3 days into the healing process. Until then, swelling can get massive and surprising, and bruising can also occur, so discoloration, bruising and tenderness is also not a sign of a problem, necessarily. If the swelling does not start to subside after 3 days, then you definitely have a problem, and there is either an infection, or some other problem that needs to be addressed.


Although soreness and swelling cannot be completely circumvented, there are certain steps and measures you can take to make sure that only a minimum of the pain and discomfort is felt. You can start by applying an ice pack to the affected area directly after the surgery, for 15 minutes at a time. This means 15 minutes on and 15 minutes off, until you go to bed. Your face will be quite frozen by then, but the swelling will be reduced to a minimum. If there are antibiotics to take, then taking them will also prevent any sort of negative (infectious) swelling from occurring. Following the rest of your regular and usual post operative instructions should also make sure that you do not have any excessive swelling.

As long as there is a blood clot forming, and you do not remove it, you should be fine, even if the swelling seems to be too much. If after the 2 or 3 days your face is still swelling up and not getting smaller, then you definitely have an infection, and need to go to the dentist, or the emergency room.