Getting stitches can be a painful and unpleasant experience, but they are often necessary to promote healing and prevent infection after oral surgery or injury. If you’ve recently undergone oral surgery or have had a tooth extracted, you may be wondering how long it will take for the stitches in your mouth to dissolve.
The length of time it takes for stitches to dissolve in the mouth depends on several factors, including the type of stitches used, the location of the stitches, and how quickly your body can absorb them. In this article, we’ll discuss the different types of stitches used in oral surgery and how long it typically takes for them to dissolve.
Types of Stitches Used in Oral Surgery
The two most common types of stitches used in oral surgery are absorbable and non-absorbable stitches.
Absorbable stitches are made from materials that break down over time, such as gut or synthetic polymer. They are typically used to close incisions or wounds that are deep within the tissue and are difficult to reach.
Non-absorbable stitches, on the other hand, are made from materials that do not break down over time, such as silk or nylon. They are often used to close wounds or incisions that are easily accessible, such as those on the surface of the skin.
How Long Does It Take for Stitches to Dissolve?
Absorbable stitches typically dissolve within 7 to 10 days after the surgery. However, the exact timeframe can vary depending on the type of material used and the location of the stitches.
For example, gut stitches tend to dissolve more quickly than synthetic polymer stitches. Additionally, stitches in areas with a lot of movement, such as the tongue or lips, may dissolve more quickly due to increased blood flow.
Non-absorbable stitches, on the other hand, do not dissolve on their own and must be removed by a dentist or oral surgeon. This is typically done within 5 to 10 days after the surgery, depending on the location of the stitches and how well the wound is healing.
What Happens If Stitches Don’t Dissolve?
In some cases, stitches may not dissolve on their own, which can lead to complications such as infection or inflammation. If you notice that your stitches have not dissolved after the expected timeframe, or if you experience pain or discomfort in the affected area, contact your dentist or oral surgeon right away.
Your dentist may need to remove the stitches manually to prevent complications. This is a quick and relatively painless procedure that can be done in the dentist’s office.
In summary, the length of time it takes for stitches to dissolve in the mouth depends on several factors, including the type of stitches used, the location of the stitches, and how quickly your body can absorb them. Absorbable stitches typically dissolve within 7 to 10 days, while non-absorbable stitches must be removed manually by a dentist or oral surgeon.
If you’ve recently undergone oral surgery or have had a tooth extracted, it’s important to follow your dentist’s instructions for caring for your stitches and monitoring the healing process. With proper care, your stitches should dissolve within the expected timeframe and promote healing without complications.
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