7 Tips: How to Stop Bleeding After Tooth Extraction
Written By Kobi Nathan, Pharm.D., M.Ed., CDP, BCGP, AGSF
Sleep Disorders
November 26, 2023

Having a tooth pulled can be an unpleasant experience, but it’s important to know how to stop bleeding after tooth extraction.

Knowing the right steps to take and having the proper knowledge of what to do following your procedure is essential to ensure your recovery goes smoothly.

In this article, we’ll go over ways to stop excessive bleeding after tooth extraction and tips for controlling the amount of blood loss during and after the process.

We will also discuss when medical attention may be needed in case of excessive or prolonged bleeding, plus advice on caring for yourself at home afterward so that you heal quickly and properly from a dental extraction.

How to Stop Bleeding After Tooth Extraction

1. Controlling the bleeding with a gauze

  • Roll or fold a clean piece of gauze into a square – it should be large enough to cover the tooth socket
  • Place it directly on top of the empty, dry socket
  • Bite down gently for at least 30 minutes
  • Ensure there is direct pressure on the tooth socket
  • If you need to change the gauze, be sure to use a new piece each time.

2. Ensure blood clot forms and stays inside the tooth socket

  • It is very important that a blood clot forms in the tooth socket, as this protects the area as it heals
  • Avoid swishing, spitting, or vigorous rinsing that can dislodge the clot
  • Avoid anything that can increase air pressure or suction – smoking, using a straw, blowing your nose, etc, as this can dislodge the clot

3. Controlling the bleeding with a tea bag

  • Follow the same instructions as above, but use a black tea bag instead

This is because tea contains tannic acid, which helps speed up clotting by constricting blood vessels and to help stop the bleeding at the site of the tooth extraction.

4. Minimizing activities that make it difficult to control bleeding

  • Avoid strenuous exercise, lifting heavy objects, or any activity that strains your jaw muscles (no yawning, talking too much, etc.)
  • It’s best to rest in bed with your head above your heart to decrease blood pressure
  • Do this for several hours until the bleeding has stopped completely

5. Be prepared for swelling after tooth extraction

  • This is normal and usually peaks within 24-48 hours after the extraction before gradually subsiding
  • Apply cold compresses over the site of the extraction to reduce inflammation and pain

6. Avoid Smoking

  • Smoking slows down recovery time
  • Smoking increases risk of infection
  • Avoid smoking for at least 48 hours after the tooth extraction

7. Eating

  • For the first 24 hours after a tooth extraction, eat soft foods like applesauce, yogurt, oatmeal, mashed potatoes, or soup to avoid strain on your jaw muscles
  • Chew slowly to avoid strain and unintentional injury to tissue
  • Avoid hard or crunchy foods that can injure the extraction site further
  • Avoid hot liquids that can dissolve the formed blood clot

By following these tips, you can help control bleeding after tooth extraction and reduce your risk of developing a serious complication.

However, if the bleeding persists or increases, contact your dentist right away to get professional advice on how to stop it.

When to Seek Medical Attention After Tooth Extraction?

Bleeding after a tooth extraction should stop within the first 24 hours of applying pressure with gauze.

If the bleeding won’t stop after this time period, seek medical attention immediately, as this could be an indication of infection or other complications.

Excessive swelling or pain in the area of the extraction site can also signal potential problems and should be evaluated by your dentist or doctor.

If you develop a fever or feel weak or dizzy after the procedure, these are all signs that something more serious may be at play.

Further evaluation must be done by your healthcare provider.

How to care for your mouth after tooth extraction?

After a tooth extraction, it is important to take proper care of your mouth to ensure that the area heals properly.

Here are some tips on how to care for your mouth after your procedure:

  • Keep the area clean – brush twice daily with an extra-soft brush and floss once daily
  • Avoid directly touching or disturbing the site until it has healed completely
  • Take over-the-counter pain medication such as ibuprofen to reduce pain
  • Avoid taking aspirin unless otherwise directed by your dentist or doctor, as this could lead to excessive bleeding due to its blood-thinning properties
  • Drink plenty of fluids and eat soft foods until you can eat solid foods again
  • Transition to solid foods when you feel comfortable enough to chew hard food again

Following these simple steps should help ensure that you recover quickly from having a tooth pulled out so that you can get back on track with living life without any dental issues.

Key Takeaway: Key takeaway: Taking proper care of your mouth after a tooth extraction is essential for a successful recovery. Make sure to brush and floss regularly, take over-the-counter pain medication as needed, drink plenty of fluids and eat soft foods until you can chew solid food again.


How long after tooth extraction should bleeding stop?

Bleeding after a tooth extraction should stop within 24 hours.

However, it is normal to experience some oozing for up to 48 hours afterward.

If bleeding persists beyond this time frame or the area around the extraction site becomes increasingly swollen and painful, contact your dentist immediately, as these could be signs of infection.

What stops bleeding fast after tooth extraction?

Applying firm, steady pressure with a moistened gauze pad or tea bag for 30 minutes is the best way to stop bleeding after a tooth extraction.

If the bleeding persists, bite down on another moistened gauze pad or tea bag for an additional 30 minutes.

You can also try using an ice pack over the extraction area for 10-15 minutes at a time.

If these methods do not work, contact your dentist immediately.

Can I go to sleep if my tooth extraction is still bleeding?

Yes, it is generally safe to go to sleep after a tooth extraction if the bleeding has slowed or stopped.

However, you should take precautions such as placing a gauze pad over the area and biting down gently for 30 minutes before going to bed.

Remove the gauze before falling asleep to avoid choking!

Additionally, you may want to prop your head up with an extra pillow to reduce any potential pressure on the wound while sleeping.

If excessive bleeding persists throughout the night, contact your dentist immediately for further instructions.

Does gargling salt water help stop bleeding after tooth extraction?

Yes, gargling salt water can help stop bleeding after tooth extraction.

Salt is a natural antiseptic and astringent that helps reduce inflammation and swelling in the extraction area.

It also acts as a coagulant, helping to form clots that can aid in stopping the bleeding.

Gargling with warm salt water several times a day for at least one week post-extraction may be beneficial in reducing pain and promoting healing.


It is important to remember that the bleeding after tooth extraction may take a few days to stop completely.

Taking proper care of your mouth and following these steps can help you control the bleeding and reduce discomfort.

If you experience any signs of infection or excessive pain, seek medical attention immediately.

With proper care, you should be able to stop bleeding quickly and effectively after tooth extraction.

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