Finding out that you have to have a tooth removed can feel like a literal pain in the mouth. Whether you have to have your tooth removed because of an injury or extreme decay, if you have never had one removed before, then you may not know what to expect. The good thing is that during the tooth removal itself, your house will be completely numb so that you won't feel a thing. So, what are you supposed to do when you're home and recovering? Read on to learn more. 


One thing that you will experience right away is a lot of facial swelling. To really help combat the swelling and make yourself feel better in the process is to apply a soft, gel ice pack to your cheek every hour or so. The ice will numb the area to help ease the pain while also helping to get rid of swelling at the same time. Just make sure that you aren't using ice that's too hard because it won't conform to your face. 


Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen are going to be your best friend while you are recovering from a tooth extraction. Not only do these drugs help you get rid of the pain associated with the removal, but they also help to get rid of the pain as well. Before you start taking NSAIDs, however, make sure to consult your primary care physician so that you can ensure that you are healthy enough to use them on a daily basis. 

Elevate Your Head

If you sleep flat on your back or on your stomach at night, try to sleep with your head elevated on a pillow instead. By elevating your head, you can help to reduce swelling and help lower the chances of getting blood clots. To elevate your head when you're sleeping, try using two fluffy pillows. 

Eat Soft Foods

For the first few days while you're in recovery, make sure to only eat soft foods like mashed potatoes, smoothies, or sweet potatoes. Then, once your mouth has healed a little more, you can ease back into eating regular foods again

Your dentist should send you home with a detailed recovery pamphlet after you have your tooth removed. Although your mouth may be a little sore for a few days, that should subside and you should get back to feeling like your normal self in about a week.