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Uncontrollable Bleeding

In some situations following dental extractions, your child may experience prolonged bleeding. If this occurs, it may be the result of a dislodged clot. The most important part of post-extraction is maintaining constant pressure on gauze. Take two gauze and fold into a square, then have your child bite down on the gauze for 20 minutes, replacing as necessary. It may be beneficial to place some gauze in the refrigerator for the cold to help slow the bleeding.

If gauze pressure does not improve the bleeding, use a tea bag (preferably black tea- it is the tannins that have a hemostatic effect). Lightly dampen the tea bag under cold water just enough to get it moist. Place the tea bag over the extraction site and bite down, 15 minutes should be sufficient. If bleeding persists, head to the ER as there may be an underlying disorder.

Following extractions, avoid drinking through straws, spitting excessively, or eating foods that may separate the clot (no chips, pretzels, etc., soft foods are best, and avoid hot soups as this may thin the clot).

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Brad Singleton, DDS Board Certified, Diplomate American Board Groovy Molar