1. Do not rinse your mouth today. Tomorrow you can rinse your mouth gently every 3-4 hours (especially after meals) using a warm salt water rinse (1/4 tsp salt dissolved in 8 oz warm water). If prescribed, use the Peridex rinse (Chlorhedixine 0.12%), starting the day after surgery, twice daily for two weeks. If prescribed, use the "Swizzle" rinse (Benadryl/Lidocaine/Maalox) every four hours as needed. For all rinses, it is important to not spit forcefully.
2. Bleeding. Following surgery, some bleeding is to be expected. If persistent bleeding occurs, place slightly dampened gauze pads over bleeding area and bite down firmly for 30 minutes, repeating as necessary. Gently biting on a warm damp teabag will help to stop persistent bleeding.
3. Swelling. An ice bag or cold moist cloth can be periodically applied to the area, 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off, for the duration of time indicated by the doctor and/or staff.
4. Pain. For mild to moderate pain, use any non-aspirin medication. We recommend 600mg ibuprofen, most effective when taken every six hours, starting right before the surgery. You may alternate the ibuprofen with acetaminophen (Tylenol) or a prescription pain medication, taken with instructions specified by the prescribing doctor. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery when taking prescription pain medications. It is to be taken only as needed for severe pain. You may continue with ibuprofen as needed after you stop taking the prescription pain medication.
5. Antibiotic. If prescribed, take as directed until all of the pills are gone, even if you feel fine.
6. Food and drink. A light diet of soft foods is advisable during the first few days following surgery. You must eat, but please avoid hot, spicy, acidic, or crunchy foods as well as carbonated beverages and alcohol. Pleave avoid sucking on straws.
7. No smoking. Smoking greatly affects the healing of your surgical site. Please try not to smoke for a minimum of 48 hours following the procedure.
8. Bony edges. Small, sharp bone fragments may work up through the gums during healing. These are not pieces of teeth, but small pieces of bone that often work themselves out of the gums. If causing discomfort or delayed healing, return to the office for their simple removal.
9. Sutures. If you have sutures, we will see you back in 2-4 weeks. In the meantime, do your best to be gentle with the treated area as not to disturb the healing process. Be very gentle when brushing, and you may rinse with warm salt water or prescribed rinses to keep the surgical site clean. The cleaner you can keep the area the faster it will heal.
10. Unusual pain, bleeding, or swelling. Call the office at once, 316-667-2429.