Follow these instructions for proper care following your dental surgery / tooth extraction. Your mouth may be numb approximately for several hours after the procedure. Do not bite, scratch, or injure the cheek, lips, or tongue during this time. And carefully drink little sips of water during this time but avoid eating.
After extraction, a gauze is placed at the site of surgery for you to bite on for 30-45 minutes. Replace this gauze as it becomes saturated and keep biting for another 30 minutes. This in most cases will be enough to stop bleeding. For the remainder of the day, you may notice minor oozing of blood, which is normal. If you feel persistent oozing of blood, bite on the extra gauze for another 30 minutes. Please do not sleep with the gauze in your mouth. If you notice excessive bleeding or bleeding hasn’t stopped in 6-12 hours, please call our office immediately.
Surgical Site Care
Avoid touching the surgical site for first 24 hours. And do not stretch the lips or cheeks to look at the area. Do not rinse vigorously, use mouthwash, or probe the area with fingers, tongue or other objects. Furthermore, after 24 hours, you may rinse with warm salt water or regular tap water after meals or use mouth wash if advised/prescribed.
In case sutures (stitches) were placed to help control bleeding and promote healing, these sutures will either dissolve in 5-10 days or will need to be removed. Please call the office for your particular situation.
If a bone graft was placed, a barrier membrane and non-dissolvable sutures will be placed. The barrier membrane and sutures sometimes may need to be removed in 2-3 weeks. Also, you may feel little chips of extra bone graft in your mouth and barrier membrane may feel like a jelly-like substance sticking up from the extraction site for a few days. Hence, avoid exploring this area with your tongue.
No physical exercise and exertion for 24-48 hours. Return to normal activities as tolerated. Do not smoke for the first 48-72 hours as it may cause complications like dry socket and infection and failure of implant/bone graft.
Wait until all numbness is worn off. Do not suck through a straw as it will promote bleeding. Stay on a soft, non-chewy diet for the first 2-3 days and then slowly move to solid foods based on what your mouth can tolerate. Moreover, avoid alcohol, carbonated drinks, extremely hot or cold beverages for 48 hours. And crunchy, hard, chunky foods that can get lodged in the extraction sites.
Keeping the mouth clean is essential. Today, other teeth may be brushed and flossed gently, but avoid stimulating the surgical site.Avoid brushing sutures if placed. Soreness and swelling may not permit vigorous brushing of all areas, but make every effort to clean the teeth within the bounds of comfort as poor oral hygiene may delay healing and cause complications.
Rinsing your mouth
You should avoid rinsing your mouth for the first day. Though you can rinse from next morning with either plain water or salt water or an alcohol free mouthwash. If a mouthwash was prescribed to you, use it as directed. Warm salt water rinses 3-4 times a day after 24 hours of procedure will help soothe the discomfort. Moreover, do not spit for 48 hours after surgery.
Completely normal to have pain after extraction, which is expected and can last from 2-7 days, depending on the procedure. Unless you are prescribed otherwise, you can take Advil or Tylenol or any pain medicine of your preference as needed, following directions on the label. Alternate between Tylenol extra strength (1000 mg) and Advil OTC 2-4 tablets (400-800 mg) every 4-6 hours for severe pain.
Slight swelling, inflammation and bruising may occur in the area of surgery . In this case, ice packs may be used for the first 24 hours (20 minutes on then 20 minutes off) to decrease swelling and/or bruising. If swelling persists after 24 hours, use warm/moist compresses (20 minutes on then 20 minutes off). Please call our office if swelling has not improved after 48 hours.
You may experience jaw muscle stiffness and limited mouth opening after extraction and surgery. It may take several weeks to improve. Stiffness may be improved by using warm moistened towels on your face 24 hours after the procedure.
After the surgery, you may experience slight elevation of temperature for the first 24-48 hours . Please drink plenty of fluids and call the office if there is a concern.
Dry socket may result from premature dissolving or loss of a blood clot following removal of a permanent tooth. This typically occurs on the third to fifth day after the extraction, with a persistent throbbing pain in the jaw. Call our office if this occurs.
PLEASE DO NOT HESITATE TO CONTACT US AT ANYTIME OF DAY OR NIGHT SHOULD YOU HAVE ANY CONCERNS OR QUESTIONS. IF WE DON’T PICK UP IMMEDIATELY, WE WILL GET BACK TO YOU ASAP.