Post-Procedure Instructions

Please take time to read carefully.

  1. Bite on moistened gauze for about an hour. The gauze should be large enough to maintain pressure when the jaws are closed tightly. If bleeding continues, bite on a fresh piece of moistened gauze for an additional hour; repeat as necessary on the day of the surgery. A certain amount of bleeding is normal and is to be expected for about 24 hours. You should remove the gauze to eat, drink and sleep. Slight oozing may continue for 1-2 days.
    Bleeding may appear to be more than it actually is because of dilution in the saliva. If you are experiencing excessive or uncontrollable bleeding, please call the office.
  2. Do not rinse your mouth for the rest of the day. Starting tomorrow, gently rinse your mouth using a full glass of warm water in which a half teaspoon of salt has been dissolved. This should be performed after each meal and before bedtime for one week.
  3. Swelling is to be expected after surgery and may persist for several days. To minimize swelling, use ice packs, 30 minutes on and 30 minutes off, for the next 3 days. Following this, a warm moist compress can then be applied to the areas for an additional 5 days. Please note, that the most significant swelling and pain may occur 48-72 hours after surgery.
  4. Do not use a straw or smoke for 7 to 10 days after surgery so proper healing can occur. Please do not chew gum during the same time frame.
  5. Restrict your diet to fluids and soft foods for 3-5 days after surgery.
  6. Jaw stiffness and discoloration may occur after surgery. This typically peaks at the second or third postoperative day and will gradually resolve.
    • Additionally, a mildly elevated temperature may also be noticed shortly after your procedure.
  7. Dissolvable stitches have been placed in the gums. These typically will begin to fall out within
    5 to 7 days.
  8. It is common to see holes where the teeth were removed. This may take 6 to 8 weeks to fully close.
  9. Slight prolonged numbness of the lip or tongue may occur. If this has not resolved after 5 days, please notify the office.
  10. After general anesthesia, drowsiness may persist for 24 hours. Therefore, DO NOT operate machinery or automobiles for 24 hours afterwards. Someone should be available to be with you for 12 to 24 hours after you return home.
  11. If intravenous medications were administered, slight redness or tenderness may occur in the region of the vein. Apply a warm, moist towel and call the office the next day.
  12. The following dosing schedules are recommended to best manage postoperative pain:
    — Step 1.
    First, take 600 mg of one of the following: Motrin, Ibuprofen, or Advil
    — Step 2. 3 hours later, if prescribed, take your narcotic (Percocet, Norco, Tylenol 3, etc.)
    — Step 3. 3 hours later, repeat Motrin, Ibuprofen, or Advil
    — Step 4. 3 hours later, if prescribed, take your narcotic (Percocet, Norco, Tylenol 3, etc.)
    — Step 5. Keep repeating the above steps as needed for pain control
    A non-narcotic alternative would be to replace the narcotic in steps 2 and 4 with over-the-counter Tylenol. Take as directed on the bottle.
    c. A long-acting local anesthetic was administered during the surgical procedures. The effect of this local anesthetic can last for a period of 8-12 hours. It is recommended that the first dose of pain medication be taken before the effects of the local anesthetic wear off.
    d. Alcohol or other medications may increase the sedative effects of the narcotic pain medication. No driving, operating machinery or supervising should be done while on these medications.
  13. In case of extreme pain, uncontrollable bleeding, or any disturbances, please call the office.