Please read through ALL the following to help ensure the best healing possible after your procedure. Schedule your follow up appointment 1-2 weeks after surgery.
TAKE YOUR ANTI-INFLAMMATORY MEDICATION: (As directed) within one hour of your surgery. Do not take it on an empty stomach. This medication will help alleviate pain and speed up recovery from procedure.
TAKE YOUR ANTIBIOTICS: (If prescribed) as directed on the bottle. Take your antibiotics until they are ALL finished and DO NOT save any. Remember to take medications with a full cup of water. It is always advised to take probiotics with your antibiotics to reduce stomach upset. Probiotics are an over-the-counter supplement that can be found in your local pharmacy.
ORAL RINSE: If you were prescribed Stella Life Rinse, you can begin to use it immediately after surgery 3x daily using a gentle swishing motion. Continue the Stella Rinse for one week or as directed. If Peridex is prescribed, that can be started 24 hours after the surgery and should be used 2-3x daily for one week. The use of warm saltwater is strongly advised. Stagger the saltwater rinse one hour from the previous medicated rinse. A cup warm water and a ½ teaspoon of salt can be mixed and used as a rinse. If you have high blood pressure, please don’t do saltwater rinses.
USE ICE PACKS: Apply to the area outside of the mouth for 15 minutes on, then 15 minutes off, for the first 24 hours.
BLEEDING: Bleeding is normal following the removal of a tooth. Your doctor will apply gauze to the extraction site, and you should bite down and keep pressure in the area for 20-30 minutes. Once home, immediately throw away the gauze. It is ok if there is a slight oozing of blood as this will be normal for the first 24-48 hours. If bleeding increases or persists, apply pressure with an additional gauze provided or use a moist tea bag. Tea bags have tannin which is a natural coagulant. Try and avoid repeatedly taking gauze in and out of your mouth as this is the equivalent to tearing a scab off your wound and may perpetuate the bleeding. Call the office or your doctor if the bleeding continues after 24 hours.
BONE GRAFT: In most cases, the tooth socket will be grafted with bone particles. A collagen membrane will be placed directly over the bone to protect and seal in the graft. It is normal to find an occasional bone particle float out of the surgical area. It is also normal that the surgical site may feel irregular, and it will generally fill in after 3-4 months.
SWELLING: Swelling is normal following surgery and usually worsens before it gets better. Swelling usually peaks at day 3. This will diminish rapidly 3-4 days after surgery. If swelling continues to increase (after 4 days), please call the office or your doctor. Try and sleep on the opposite side of the surgery for the first 48 hours.
SUTURES: If the sutures used during surgery were dissolvable, they will dissolve on their own. If not, we will remove them on your follow up visit. If a suture is dangling and becomes annoying, you can attempt to cut it and remove it gently. Do not pull on your cheek to inspect the sutures as the tissue is susceptible to tearing after surgery.
PERIODONTAL DRESSING: : (“band-aid”): If a periodontal dressing was placed, it may come loose before your next visit. If it comes loose, please remove it and gently keep the area clean with an upward and downward brushing (gum to tooth strokes). If a piece breaks off before the next appointment, the area might be sensitive to cold. In that case, you could start using toothpaste for sensitive teeth (Sensodyne).
WHAT CAN I EAT: Wait until the numbness goes away (about 2 hours) before eating. We want to be sure that you do not bite your cheeks, lips, or tongue while they are numb. Remain on a soft food diet for the next 48 hours. Avoid foods that are high in acidity such as lemon, vinegar, and tomato sauce. Avoid eating nuts, seeds, popcorn, and anything that can get caught between your teeth. Examples of foods to eat are protein shakes, apple sauce, lukewarm soup broth, yogurt, pasta, boiled chicken, or mashed potatoes. ALWAYS try to chew on the opposite side from treatment. Drink plenty of water to remain hydrated. This is key to quicker healing.
BRUSHING TEETH: You may start brushing your teeth right away. Try to avoid brushing the surgical area for the first 24 hours. Afterwards, continue brushing very gently around the gumline. If you notice bleeding when brushing, then discontinue and try again the next day.
IMPLANT CARE: Following implant surgery, you may notice a healing abutment extending slightly above the gum line. This is a round shiny button that is a removable extension from the implant. The healing abutment’s purpose is to create a channel though the gum where the final crown connects to the implant. Care should be taken to keep this button clean and shiny. Begin gently brushing it with warm water starting 24 hours after surgery. After one week, you can clean it with toothpaste and regular brushing. It is VERY IMPORTANT keep your tongue away from the implant. The tongue is a very strong muscle and has been known to cause implant failure.
GET PLENTY OF REST: : Healing always progresses faster by avoiding strenuous work or exercise for 2-3 days. Be kind to yourself and follow your body to heal or the first 2 days. This will help minimize any swelling. An elevated headrest (an extra pillow) should be used during the first 2 nights of sleep to also reduce swelling.
GENERAL ADVICE: For the first 72 hours, NO carbonated beverages, and NO alcoholic beverages. For a minimum of 3 weeks after surgery, NO SMOKING. Smoking reduces your body’s ability to heal resulting in blood vessel constriction. This prevents the body from sending vital nutrients and oxygen to the surgical area. Smoking delays healing and, in most times, may cause surgical failure. Do not wear partial or full denture until allowed by your doctor.
If you have any questions or concerns, before or after your appointment please feel free to contact us.