Please wait until numbness from anesthesia has worn off. If you are supervising a child who has had treatment, make certain that they are not eating or chewing while numb. Please make sure they do not bite their lips or tongue as doing so can cause serious injury to their soft tissue. Avoid sticky, crunchy, or hard foods for 24 hours.
Sensitivity to cold and heat, as well as any soreness, should not last more than a few days. Please call our office if you experience pain or discomfort for more than a few days.
Sensitivity and tenderness of the tooth and surrounding gums is common for the first day or two after a tooth has been prepared for a restoration. If the tenderness or sensitivity lasts longer than this, please contact our office. If anesthesia is used, avoid chewing, biting, and eating until the numbness wears off. The final restoration may be placed the same day that the tooth is prepared or may be placed during a separate appointment.
For Temporary Restorations: Eat softer foods, and avoid foods that are particularly crunchy, chewy, or hard. Carefully clean around the restoration, brushing and flossing daily. Be gentle when flossing, taking extra care not to loosen the temporary restoration. Slowly pulling the floss out by one end can help avoid putting too much pressure on the temporary. If the temporary restoration becomes loose or breaks, please call us immediately.
After Final Restoration Placement: Avoid chewing on hard, crunchy, or sticky foods for 24 hours in order to give time for the cement to fully bond. Mild sensitivity to hot or cold foods is not unusual and should dissipate after a few weeks. If sensitivity lasts more than six weeks, please let the office know.
Ongoing Care: Proper care of your restoration includes brushing your teeth after every meal and snack, and flossing at least once a day before bedtime. Rinsing your mouth with water or mouthwash with also help to remove any additional particles that may have been missed during brushing and flossing.
You can take ibuprofen or acetaminophen as needed according to the instructions on the label or those provided by your doctor. A warm salt water rinse, approximately one teaspoon in an eight ounce glass of water, three times a day can be helpful. Brush and floss gently following a deep cleaning, resuming normal brushing and flossing when the soreness is gone.
Follow any other instructions provided by our office during your visit. Please take all medications as prescribed.
*Limit physical activity for the first 24 hours and avoid excessive exertion for the first 72 hours.
*Use the ice pack for the first day following surgery-20 minutes on and 10 minutes off. This will contribute to your comfort and minimize swelling.
*Moist heat may be applied the day following surgery for added comfort.
*You should begin taking your pain medication BEFORE numbness wears off.
*If an antibiotic was prescribed, take it as directed until it is ALL GONE.
*Some medications may cause an upset stomach. Taking these with food will lessen this side effect.
*Some seepage of blood is expected, however extensive bleeding should not occur. If such bleeding should occur, apply firm pressure with a moist gauze or moist tea bag to the area for 20 minutes. If the bleeding does not subside, please call.
*Avoid rinsing, spitting or sucking through a straw for 24 hours after surgery. Blood is clotting and this will disturb the healing process.
*Do not rinse with an over-the counter mouthwash as they are irritants and will cause pain and delay healing.
*You may begin to brush the NON-SURGICAL areas the day following surgery, but DO NOT USE TOOTHPASTE FOR THE FIRST WEEK.
*Do not touch the surgical sites for the first week; you could dislodge the tissue and compromise the success of the graft.
*Do not pull your lip away to view the graft site.
*Do not eat on the surgical side or area for several weeks.
*Eat softer foods for the first week such as pasta, eggs, fish, yogurt, soup, pudding and soft cooked vegetables.
*Avoid extremes: very hot, very cold or acidic foods. Do not eat hard crunchy foods such as popcorn, seeds, nuts or chips for the first month after surgery.
*Maintain a balanced diet.
*We strongly advise NOT SMOKING after surgery. Smoking delays the healing, increases discomfort, and may encourage bleeding and infection in the surgical site.
Day of Surgery
Control of Minor BLEEDING:
• Keep a gauze pack directly on the surgical site and apply gentle pressure.
• Change the gauze pack every 30 to 45 minutes until minor bleeding is controlled.
• It is common to have slight bleeding for a few hours after gum graft surgery.
• Do not rinse or clean the teeth next to the surgical site. This can wash away to newly formed clot of blood and restart the bleeding.
• If bleeding persists, apply a moist tea bag to the surgical site with gentle pressure for 30 minutes. Repeat the application of the tea bag for a second time if you still have slight bleeding.
We are very concerned about your well being, please call our office if you need further assistance.
Control of Minor SWELLING
• Apply an ice pack to your face near the surgical site. Intermittent application with 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off is most effective. Ice should be applied for several hours on the day of your surgery.
• Keep your head elevated above chest level.
Please take your pain medications and or antibiotics according to the specified dosage schedule.
EATING AND DRINKING
It is okay to drink soon after surgery. Please remove your gauze pack and replace it afterwards. Please avoid very hot liquids and alcohol on the day of your surgery. Do not use a straw.
• Do not clean next to the surgical site.
• You may brush and floss your other teeth.
• The tongue should be brushed.
You may not drive for 24 hours after IV sedation or while taking pain medications. Light activity is recommended for the first day.
Day After Surgery
• It is okay to have some minor bleeding.
• It is a good idea to apply ice.
• Take pain medications if needed.
• You may have soft nutritious foods and please chew on the opposite side of your surgery.
• It is okay to start gently rinsing in the surgical area. Please avoid mouth rinses that have alcohol.
1. Patient cannot drive for 24 hours after taking sedation medication.
2. Do not operate any hazardous devices for 24 hours.
3. A responsible person should be with the patient until he/she has fully recovered from the effects of the sedation.
4. Patient should not go up and down stairs unattended. Let the patient stay on the ground floor until recovered.
5. Having nutrition after sedation is important. The patient should begin eating appropriate food as soon as possible. Do not delay.
6. Patient needs to drink plenty of fluids as soon as possible.
7. Patient may seem alert when he/she leaves. This may be misleading so do not leave the patient alone.
8. Always hold patient's arm when walking.
9. Call us if you have any questions or difficulties. If you feel that your symptoms warrant a physician and you are unable to reach us, go to the nearest emergency room immediately.
10. Patient should not carry, sleep next to, or be left alone around young children for a period of no less than 24 hours after the last dosage of medication.
11. Drive directly home and call the office when you arrive at home to let us know that the patient is comfortable and safe.
Following most surgical procedures there may or may not be pain, depending on your threshold for pain. You will be provided with medication for discomfort that is appropriate for you. In most cases, a non-narcotic pain regimen will be given consisting of acetaminophen ( Tylenol ) and ibuprofen ( Advil ). These two medications TAKEN TOGETHER will be as effective as a narcotic without any of the side effects associated with narcotics. If a narcotic has been prescribed, follow the directions carefully. If you have any questions about these medications interacting with other medication you are presently taking, please call our office, your physician, and/or your pharmacist.
I have been told that I snore YES/NO
I frequently suffer from daytime sleepiness YES/NO
I sometimes wake up with a “snort” YES/NO
I have been told that I hold my breath or stop breathing in my sleep YES/NO
I have high blood pressure YES/NO
I toss and turn a lot in my sleep YES/NO
I wish I had more energy and less fatigue YES/NO
I am more than 15 lbs overweight YES/NO
I sometimes get heartburn in the middle of the night YES/NO
I frequently wake with a bad taste in my mouth, or a dry mouth and throat YES/NO
I often get morning headaches YES/NO
I suddenly wake up gasping for breath YES/NO
I do not feel rested and refreshed, especially after 8 or 10 hours of sleep YES/NO
If you chose 3 or more symptoms, you could have Sleep Apnea. Left untreated, Sleep Apnea can cause high blood pressure, memory problems, headaches, and other severe medical problems.
- Do you wish your teeth were whiter? YES NO
- Do you have any crooked teeth? YES NO
- Do you wish you could change something about your smile? YES NO
- Do you have uneven, worn or chipped teeth? YES NO
- Do you have missing teeth? YES NO
- Do you usually smile with your mouth closed for pictures? YES NO
- Do you have teeth that seem too short, long, big or small? YES NO
- Do you have old dental work like dark fillings that stop you from smiling? YES No
- Do you feel like your gums show too much when you smile? YES NO
- Do you have any stained, yellow or discolored teeth? YES NO
If you answered YES to any of these questions, we have good news!! There are many different procedures that can improve the quality of your teeth and give you the confidence to smile the way you deserve! Thank you for taking the time to let us know how we can help you.
Post-operative care is important following oral surgery and recovery may be delayed if this care is neglected. Some swelling, stiffness, oozing of blood and discomfort is expected after surgery. It is helpful to have the patient observed by a responsible adult for the duration of the day of the surgery. The following includes our post-operative instructions and events, which may take place following this kind of surgery.
Bleeding: The gauze pad which was placed after surgery acts as a protective dressing and should be left in place 2-3 hours with gentle pressure applied. Some oozing is to be expected. If excessive bleeding is noticed, this is not normal. Most often, however, this can be controlled by the use of clean gauze placed directly over the surgical site and held with firm pressure for approximately 1 hour until the bleeding is controlled. If bleeding continues, call the office number at any time.
Pain: If it is necessary, you will be provided with a prescription for medication. This can be filled at any drugstore and should be used as directed. Pain may be expected soon after the surgery and will reach its maximum during the first few hours. It is recommended that the prescription be started approximately 1-2 hours after the surgery and continued as directed.
Nausea: If nausea is encountered in the immediate post-operative period, it is often increased by taking the pain medication. Remember not to take the pain medication without something in your stomach. The post-operative nausea may be relieved by taking 1oz. of a carbonated drink such as Ginger Ale every hour for 5-6 hours. This can be followed with mild tea, broth, and soft foods before resuming your regular diet.
Swelling: Swelling and stiffness are to be expected. This swelling may increase over the first 2 days, and then it should start to subside. Swelling can be somewhat controlled by the use of ice and heat as follows:
- Ice: Use ice for the first 12-24 hours applying it to the cheeks for 20 minutes and removing it for 20 minutes alternately.
- Heat: Swelling and stiffness may be relieved by warm, moist heat applied to the jaws on the 2nd and 3rd days following the surgery.
- The stiffness which can sometimes occur will usually be relieved by the heat application, the use of chewing gum at intervals, and gentle stretching exercises beginning the day after surgery.
Nourishment: Nourishment should not be neglected. On the day of surgery, a light diet is recommended (instant breakfast, Jell-O, soups, shakes, etc.). The following day, a soft diet to a regular diet as tolerated may be started. The patient should not use a straw for several, since this may dislodge the blood clot.
Bruising: Depending on the nature of the surgery which was performed and the nature of the person, some discoloration on the face may be seen for 3-5 days after the surgery. If this happens, do not be alarmed.
Oral Hygiene: Rinsing, spitting, and tooth brushing should be avoided on the day of surgery. Starting on the day after surgery, frequent gentle rinsing with mile, warm salt water is encouraged. Brushing should also be resumed, being careful to avoid the surgical site for the first two days. Good oral hygiene is important to normal wound healing.
Activities: Activities for the first 24 hours should be minimal. Rest quietly with your head elevated. Smoking should be discontinued for at least 3 days. Do not expect to return to work or normal activities immediately. Two to three days rest is recommended and subsequently resuming activities as they are tolerated. Vigorous physical activities and sports should not be resumed until the surgical areas are comfortable, swelling is resolved and a normal diet is possible. Usually contact sports should not be resumed for approximately 1 week post-operatively. Musical wind instruments should not be played for at least 7-10 days after most oral surgery.
Numbness: Many times the roots of the lower teeth are adjacent to the nerve in the lower jaw. When the tooth is removed, the nerve may be slightly disturbed which may lead to a numbness of your chin, lower lip, and your lower teeth on that side. No one can determine exactly how long this will remain, but it is rarely permanent.
Taste and Odor: After the surgery, a bad taste or odor may occur. This is usually secondary to a lack of appropriate cleaning in the area. Commercial mouthwash may be used along with normal rinsing and brushing.
Uncommon Problems: Many people fear the possibility of a dry socket, which is a very unusual complication. If you have pain, however, that is not relieved by the pain medication or aspirin, this may be the case. If possible, you should return to our office or if the distance is too great, see your local dentist. Pain in the ear, difficulty swallowing, and difficulty opening and closing the jaws are symptoms which can occur with varying frequency, and usually are not significant. Swelling at a later date is uncommon, but if the swelling increases after 5-7 days, please contact our office at (860) 628-5029.
Emergency: If there is any difficulty in breathing, fever, excessive bleeding or any other disturbing problems following the surgery, you should call the office immediately or go to the emergency room.
Women please note: Some antibiotics may interfere with the effectiveness of your birth control pills. Please check with your pharmacist.