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How does a tooth extraction site look and feel?

It takes awhile for a tooth extraction site to heal.  Amanda didn't like what she saw two days after having a tooth removed. 

Amanda's question

I had a tooth extraction two days ago and now its white and looks like a tooth there.

Is this normal?

It does look like a tooth also up above my gum is swollen like a ball shape is this normal?

My reply

Hi Amanda,    
Tooth extraction sites look kind of whitish while they are healing and you could still have some swelling where the tooth was removed.

The white tissue is part of a normal healing process and it can look like a tooth is still there.

It should look less and less white every day.  It will take longer than two days to heal.

It takes weeks not days for the area to heal completely and look normal but it takes a lot less time for it to feel good.  The area should be feeling better each day.

Removing a tooth traumatizes the bone and gum tissue near the tooth extraction site. Some swelling and soreness is very normal and should gradually improve.  

If the swelling doesn't improve or if you have a concern about how it is healing, you should call your dentist...having it checked is the only way to know for sure that it is healing properly.  

Be sure to follow your dentist's tooth extraction care instructions

Most dentists and oral surgeons advise clients to avoid chewing on the side where the tooth was removed.

A soft diet is a good idea.

Try to leave the area undisturbed as much as possible.

An antibiotic or pain medicine may be prescribed.

Gently rinsing the area after the first 24 hours is sometimes recommended.

Post extraction care instructions vary. If you have questions regarding tooth extraction care, ask your dentist.

Dry socket is the most common complication after a tooth extraction

When a tooth is removed, a blood clot forms in the socket...the hole that is left after the tooth is gone. The clot is needed to help the tooth extraction site heal properly.

A dry socket occurs a few days after a tooth extraction if the blood clot comes out. A dry socket is very painful.  More about dry socket here.

Taking good care of your extraction site will make getting a dry socket less likely. 

Here is some additional info on after care. This article is about wisdom teeth, but some of the information applies to any tooth extraction.

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