Oral Surgery Post Operative Instructions
INSTRUCTIONS FOLLOWING ORAL SURGERY
BLEEDING: Normal oozing may occur for up to 24 hours or more following surgery and is controlled by firm biting pressure on several gauze pads placed over the tooth socket. Keep gauze packs in your mouth for at least 1 hour. Replace them if they become too saturated. If the bleeding is brisk and fills the mouth quickly, call the telephone numbers listed below immediately.
SWELLING: Swelling and bruising are common after surgery. Peak swelling, pain, and jaw stiffness typically occur 2 or 3 days after the surgery. To keep swelling to a minimum, apply ice packs 15 minutes on then 15 minutes off until bedtime the day of the surgery. Keep your head elevated until bedtime. Moist heat after the first 36 hours may help jaw soreness.
PAIN: The highest amount of discomfort occurs in the first 6 to 8 hours after surgery. Take ONE pain tablet immediately after returning home. Never take pain medication on an empty stomach. If itching or rash develops, stop taking all medications and call us at the number listed below immediately. If a dull pain along with an earache increase on the third or fourth day, call for an appointment immediately.
MUSCLE SORENESS: Difficulty in opening the jaws is common after third molar extractions. Chewing gum (sugarless) at intervals will help with muscle soreness as will moist heat after 36 hours.
MOUTH CARE: No rinsing, smoking, or drinking through a straw for 24 hours following surgery. The day after surgery rinses with a glass of warm salt water (mixed with one teaspoon of salt) five times a day for at least a week. Brush and floss, as usual, avoiding surgical sites. The corners of your mouth may dry and crack. Keep them moist with a petroleum-based gel.
DIET: It is crucial to maintain proper nutrition following surgery. Eat a lukewarm soft diet the day of the surgery. Eat whatever you can the day after surgery. Drink as much fluid as you can for three days.
INFECTION: If swelling and discomfort worsen after the fourth day following surgery along with a foul taste, fever and difficulty swallowing, call the number listed below immediately.
IF YOU ARE CONCERNED ABOUT YOUR CONDITION AFTER ORAL SURGERY, NOTIFY DR. WALTERS IMMEDIATELY BY CALLING (614) 662-2082 Monday – Thursday, 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.
If calling after hours, voicemail will provide an emergency contact phone number.