A Primer on Applying Direct Pressure

Minor to moderate bleeding may occur for some time after a tooth has been extracted. In most cases, this bleeding can be effectively controlled and subsequently stopped by placing gauze over the extraction site and applying firm, direct pressure. Make sure that the gauze is positioned directly on the extraction site; you may need to fold the gauze small enough to fit between adjacent teeth.

If bleeding persists, a slightly moistened black tea bag can be a very effective substitute for the gauze (following the same instructions given for the gauze placement). One of the ingredients of regular black tea is tannic acid, and tannic acid aids in the formation of blood clots.

It is both the application of firm pressure and maintaining this pressure that are important factors in controlling the initial bleeding after an extraction, although slight bleeding or oozing may occur several days after surgery. If heavy bleeding persists after these steps have been followed you should contact Dr. Bonine.