Do not disturb the wound. Avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery. There could be a metal healing abutment protruding through the gingival (gum) tissue.
Some bleeding or redness in the saliva is normal for 24 hours. Excessive bleeding (your mouth fills up rapidly with blood) can be controlled by biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues, please call for further instructions.
Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling, apply an ice bag, or a plastic bag, or towel filled with ice on the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the ice continuously, as much as possible, for the first 36 hours.
Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid hot liquids or food. Soft food and liquids should be eaten on the day of surgery. Return to a normal diet as soon as possible unless otherwise directed.
You should begin taking pain medication before you feel the local anesthetic wearing off. For moderate pain, if you can take Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) 600mg (3 over the counter) every 4-6 hours as needed for pain. Tylenol should only be taken if you cannot take Ibuprofen. Take 2 Regular strength Tylenol every 4-6 hours. For severe pain, the prescribed medication should be taken as directed. Do not take any of the above medication if you are allergic, or have been instructed by your doctor not to take it.
Be sure to take the prescribed antibiotics as directed to help prevent infection.
Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing. The night of surgery, use the prescribed Chlorohexidine Oral Rinse before bed. The day after surgery, the Chlorohexidine should be used three times daily, after breakfast and before bed. Be sure to rinse for at least 30 seconds then spit out. Warm salt water rinses (teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) should be used at least 4-5 times a day, as well, especially after meals. Brushing your teeth and any healing abutments is no problem. Be gentle initially with brushing the surgical areas.
Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. If you are considering exercise, throbbing or bleeding may occur. If this occurs, you should discontinue exercising. Keep in mind that you are probably not taking normal nourishment. This may weaken you and further limit your ability to exercise.
Partial dentures, flippers, or full dentures should not be used immediately after surgery and for at least 10 days. This was discussed in the pre-operative consultation.
Day 1: Continue biting on the gauze for 30-60 minutes following your procedure. Do NOT spit, rinse, suck (using a straw), smoke, drink carbonated or alcoholic beverages for at least 24 hours. Passively empty your mouth when needed. The goal is to keep blood clot in the socket to prevent bleeding and a painful complication known as DRY SOCKET.
Day 2: You will most likely experience one or more of the following symptoms:
Minor pain, swelling, bruising, limitation in opening or closing your mouth, pain in jaw or ear, sore throat. It is important to listen to your body and take it easy. No heavy lifting, spitting, sucking, alcohol or smoking.
Oral hygiene: Brush gently. A gentle lukewarm salt water rinse can be used to freshen your mouth. But again, do not spit; just let the fluid passively empty. The corners of your mouth may become cracked and dry – moisturize frequently.
Discomfort: Over-the-counter- pain medication (Ibuprofen, Aleve, and Tylenol) may be taken as directed on the bottle to relieve discomfort.
Swelling: Apply cold compresses to the affected area at 10 minute intervals for the first 24 hours to minimize swelling. Any swelling that occurs usually begins to diminish within 72 hours; call the office if there is no change.
Bleeding: Some oozing of blood is normal for the first 12-24 hours. Put a hand towel on your pillow as some drooling can occur when you are numb. If you experience excessive bleeding, apply firm pressure with 1-2 folded gauze pads or a damp tea bag on the affected area for 30-60 minutes and keep your head elevated. Call the office if the bleeding does not subside.
Diet: Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid carbonated and alcoholic beverages. A soft diet will be easiest: yogurt, milkshakes (no straw), soups, fish, pasta. Nothing too spicy is recommended. It is normal to have a little tenderness while chewing and difficulty opening wide.
Stitches: If you have received sutures, avoid playing with them. A fifteen-minute appointment will be needed to remove the sutures in 7-10 days.
Prescriptions: If you have been prescribed antibiotics, take them as directed until they are all gone, even if symptoms dissipate. Some antibiotics can interfere with the effectiveness of birth control pills or other medications. If pain medication or a mouth rinse is prescribed, take as directed.
In case of any unusual disturbances, questions or any post-surgical problems, please call the office.
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