Surgical Instructions
Bleeding Control

A small amount of bleeding or oozing is considered normal for 24-48 hours after any oral surgery procedure.  Following the procedure, bite on the gauze placed by the doctor for 15-20 minutes.   Then, remove the gauze and begin to drink cold liquids. The cold liquids will help maintain the blood clot in the socket and keep the bleeding to a minimum.  Avoid hot liquids for the first day since this may increase bleeding and swelling.  It is very important to minimize the rinsing and spitting for the first 24 hours because this action will also make the surgical site bleed.  If the bleeding is persistent, place a tea bag moistened with cold water at the surgical site and bite firmly.  If bleeding continues despite following the above instructions, call the office at (703) 370-3012.


Pain Control

As soon as possible following surgery, begin taking the pain medication as directed by the doctor.  For effective pain control, it is advantageous to begin the use of the pain medication prior to the local anesthetic wearing off.  Continue to use the pain medication as needed.  Avoid smoking, this increases post operative pain and prolongs the healing time.


Oral Hygiene

Regular oral hygiene can be resumed the day after surgery.  It is important to brush and floss as usual but you should avoid the surgical site for several days following the procedure.  It is also important not to rinse until a day after surgery.  You may rinse your  mouth with warm salt water starting on the day following surgery. (1/2 teaspoon salt mixed in a glass of warm water)   Avoid smoking for as long as possible.


Swelling Control

Immediately following the procedure, apply an ice bag over the site to help prevent excessive swelling.  Place the ice bag (or frozen bags of peas) onto the site for 20 minutes and then remove the pack for 20 minutes.  Continue this process as much as possible for the first 24 hours.  Ice should NOT be used after the first 24 hours.  Remember that swelling peaks around 48-72 hours.


Diet

Gradually return to a normal diet.  Start with soft foods such as oatmeal, bananas or mashed potatoes.  You may return to solid foods when you feel comfortable.  It is very important to drink lots of fluids during the healing process and to maintain a nutritious diet.


Information regarding the removal of impacted teeth
The removal of impacted wisdom teeth is quite different than the extraction of erupted teeth.  The following conditions may occur, all of which are considered normal:

  1. Swelling peaks at 48-72 hours after surgery and may become quit large
  2. Difficulty in opening your mouth may persist for several days
  3. Referred pain may result in a sore throat, ear ache or even discomfort in the adjacent teeth
  4. Cracks in the lips or corners of the mouth can be taken care of with Vaseline or lip balm
  5. There will be a space where the tooth was removed.  This will gradually fill in with healthy gum tissue.
  6. Facial bruising is normal
  7. A slight fever is normal 24-48 hours after surgery however if the temperature continues the office should be notified
  8. Discomfort and bruising at the IV site may occur; if pain and swelling is persistent the office should be notified.
  9. Please remember to come to your follow up visit so that the doctor can monitor your healing
  10. If you had General Anesthesia do not operate machinery or drive for 24 hours.