Post-Op Instructions For Worcester Patients
Every dental procedure requires its own, unique post-operative care, and these specifics will be provided by your dentist as part of your treatment plan. However, there are some post-op tips that will help all patients feel better and heal faster. Next time you need oral surgery like tooth extraction, root canal therapy, or dental implants keep these Dos and Don’ts in mind.
- Do not use mouthwash for several days as aggressive swishing and gargling can irritate the operation site.
- Do gently rinse the mouth with warm saline rinses between meals to keep your affected tissue healthy and clean.
- Do not smoke or consume alcohol for the first 48 hours after surgery.
- Do be sure to keep the affected area clean and protected to avoid dry socket.
- Do not drink through a straw and avoid spitting as this can increase bleeding.
- Do drink beverages that are non-acidic and neutral in temperature. Cool water is preferable, but warm tea (not too hot) can be soothing to the mouth and throat.
- Do not eat chewy, crunchy, or excessively spiced foods.
- Do eat when you feel hungry, but stick to soft foods like jello, mashed potatoes, and rice.
- Do not use aspirin products 48 hours before or after an operation. These medicines thin the blood making clotting and healing more difficult.
- Do discuss all medications with you physician and dentist before undergoing any surgical procedure.
- Do not undergo surgery with proper medical preparation if you suffer from immune compromising diseases or need treatment that causes immune defects such as: diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer treatment, and steroid use (including asthma inhalers and allergy treatment).
- Do continue to take all prescribed medications, especially antibiotics, unless otherwise advised by your dentist or other health care provider. Blood thinners will likely be the exception. Check with your dentist before resuming this course of treatment.
- Do not lay flat on your back for several days following an operation as this increases blood flow. Sleep propped on several pillows to reduce the risk of bleeding.
- Do expect bleeding after an operation. Oral surgery often leads to greater bleeding due to the densely populated capillaries on the face. If bleeding is continual or blood flow increases dramatically, apply a cool, damp gauze pad to the operation site and hold down by closing teeth together. After 5 to 10 minutes, remove the gauze. If the area is still bleeding, repeat the process as necessary until blood flow ceases. Ice can also be applied to the operation site to slow or stop bleeding.
- Do not touch or try to remove hard edges you feel around the extraction or surgical site as some patients experience bone spurs, edges, or fragments that travel below the skin. These spurs will not adversely affect your healing, but if they become painful or uncomfortable, removal is simple. Call our office if you think you may have a bone edge that requires removal.
- Do expect some pain and swelling to occur following an operation. Ice is a great way to reduce swelling, staunch blood flow, and decrease pain. Directly following surgery, hold an ice pact to your face near the affected area for 20 minute intervals (20 minutes to ice and 20 minutes to rest) for the first 5 hours. Repeat this process as necessary to help with pain and swelling.
Food and Drink
First Aid & Pain Management
If you experience any other symptoms especially if you fear they may be life threatening, call our office immediately or visit your nearest emergency care center for assistance.