Can A Child Swim After Getting a Tooth Extraction?

Can A Child Swim After Getting a Tooth Extraction?

TeamPediatric Dentistry

The American Association of Pediatric Dentists recommends that children avoid physical exercise and exertion on the day of a tooth extraction. To that end, children should not go swimming after having a tooth removed. Read on to learn why exercises such as swimming are off-limits for kids following a tooth extraction.

Why Kids Need to Take it Easy After Having a Tooth Removed

After a tooth has been extracted, a blood clot will form to protect the extraction site. This protective clot plays a vital role in preventing dry socket. Dry socket occurs when the blood clot becomes dislodged, exposing the underlying bone to the air, and any foods or liquids your child may consume.  Dry socket can be very painful, so all measures to prevent dry socket should be taken.

Because exercise of any kind (including swimming) can increase blood pressure, it should be avoided after a tooth extraction. An increase in blood pressure can cause bleeding.  Worse, an increase in blood pressure can cause the protective blood clot to become dislodged.

As much as your child may want to go play with friends, ride their bike, or go swimming, for the first 48 hours, it’s important that they take it easy. 

Activities Kids Can Enjoy After a Tooth Extraction

Kids can get bored easily, particularly if they are normally very active. So it is smart to have activities planned that your child can engage in after a tooth extraction. Most non-exercise activities are perfectly safe after a tooth extraction. Here is a list of activities for kids to enjoy after a tooth extraction.

  • Reading
  • Coloring, painting, drawing
  • Watching a movie/cartoon
  • Puzzles
  • Games
  • Going out for ice cream or another yummy, soft treat
  • Crafts, Play-Doh, Slime, etc
  • Playing with toys 
  • Screen time

Tips to Ensure a Healthy Recovery from a Tooth Extraction

In addition to taking it easy following a tooth extraction, follow these tips to ensure your child heals quickly from their extraction.

  • Only eat soft foods for the first 24 hours
  • Avoid using a straw or sippy cup for first few days after extraction
  • No hot, spicy, or acidic foods or beverages for 24 hours
  • Use an ice pack or cold compress on the jaw if your child experiences swelling
  • Take all medications as prescribed
  • Avoid brushing the area near the surgical site
  • Rinse the mouth gently per your dentist’s instructions
  • Follow all other post-treatment instructions provided by your pediatric dentist

If your child experiences severe bleeding after their extraction, or complains of pain, be sure to notify your pediatric dentist. 

Schedule Pediatric Dental Care at one of our Five NY Locations 

At Suffolk Pediatric Dentistry, our pediatric dentists will avoid extracting teeth wherever possible. In cases where a tooth extraction is necessary, you can count on our team of friendly, gentle dentists to ensure your child’s comfort during the procedure. To schedule a dental appointment for your child in Port Jefferson Station, Wading River, Sayville, Smithtown, or Medford, NY, contact us today.