Post-operative care is very important. Unnecessary pain and the complications of infection and swelling can be minimized if the instructions are followed carefully:

  • Bite down on gauze until bleeding stops (about 1-2 hours)
  • Swelling can be expected. Use ice packs on the surgical area (side of face) for the first 48 hours; apply ice 20 minutes on and 10 minutes off. (Note: Bags of frozen peas work well.) Keeping head elevated for 3 days. Swelling peaks on the second or third post-operative day.
  • LIQUID DIET day of surgery (nothing with food particles) (i.e.- shakes, broth, yogurt, pudding, jello); soft food diet days after surgery (i.e..- Mashed potatoes, bread, pasta).
  • Difficulty in opening your mouth widely and discomfort upon swallowing should be anticipated.
  • Numbness of the lips and/or tongue on the affected side may be experienced for a variable period of time.
  • If the corners of the mouth are stretched out, they may dry and crack. Your lips should be kept moist with cream or ointment.
  • There will be a space where the tooth was removed. After day 5, Rinse your mouth with Peridex (twice a day) for 7 days after surgery. On day 5 after surgery, gently irrigate sockets with Peridex for 7 days after surgery. This cavity will gradually fill in with new tissue.
  • Keep your fingers and tongue away from the socket or surgical area.
  • For discomfort, take ibuprofen every 6 hours for 1 week.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. (Do not use a straw—this creates suction in the mouth that could cause complications.)
  • We suggest that you do not smoke for at least 5 days after surgery.
  • Avoid strenuous activity and do not exercise for at least 3–4 days after surgery.
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