Post-Operative Care Following an Extraction and Oral Surgery

Day 1
Use gentle pressure by biting on the gauze for 45-60 minutes following your procedure.
Do NOT spit, rinse, suck (using a straw), smoke, drink carbonated or alcoholic beverages for at least 24 hours. Passively empty your mouth when needed. The goal is to keep blood clot in the socket to prevent bleeding and a painful complication known as DRY SOCKET.

Smoking: Refrain from smoking for at least 48 hours as smoking limits the blood supply to the extraction site and slows down the healing process. It may loosen the blood clot.

Day 2
Oral hygiene: Brush gently. Rinse gently with a lukewarm salt water rinse (½ teaspoon salt to 8oz warm water) every 3-4 hours, especially after meals for the next 2-3 days. But again, do not spit, just let the fluid passively empty. The corners of your mouth may become cracked and dry and you may need to moisturize frequently. Good oral hygiene limits the amount of bacteria in the mouth.

Discomfort: Following an extraction it is normal to experience some form of discomfort. Over-thecounter-pain medications (Ibuprofen, Aleve, and Tylenol) may be taken as directed on the bottle to relieve discomfort.

Swelling: Some swelling and skin bruising may occur. Gently applying cold packs (20 minutes every hour for the next 6 hours) is helpful to minimize swelling and pain. Any swelling that occurs usually begins to diminish within 72 hours.

Bleeding: Some oozing of blood is normal for the first 12-24 hours. Put a hand towel on your pillow as some drooling can occur when you are numb. If you experience continued bleeding after 1 hour, fold and place new gauze, gently biting down and applying firm pressure on the surgical site for another 30-60 minutes. Keep your head elevated. Call the office if the bleeding does not subside.

Diet: Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid carbonated and alcoholic beverages. A soft diet will be easiest: yogurt, milkshakes (no straw), soups, fish, pasta. Avoid foods like nuts and popcorn which can loosen and dislodge the blood clot. Nothing too spicy is recommended. It is normal to have a little tenderness while chewing and difficulty opening wide.

Stitches: If you have received sutures, avoid playing with them. The sutures will be removed in 7-10 days.

Prescriptions: If you have been prescribed antibiotics, take them as directed until they are all gone, even if the symptoms go away. Some antibiotics can interfere with the effectiveness of birth control pills or other medications. If pain medication or a mouth rinse is prescribed, take as directed.

Exercising: Avoid heavy exercising for at least 24 hours. No weight lifting, running, sports, etc.

Please call the office if there are any complications or if you have any questions.
Office: (323) 937-0197
Daniel H. Tamura, DDS

Posted in Oral Surgery, Post-Operative Instructions Following an Extraction

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