Patient Info

Post-Op Instructions

Patients who have recently undergone an invasive dental procedure should follow the tips below to minimize the risk of complications and to ensure proper healing of the surgical area.

1. Protect the blood clot at the surgical site.
Maintain gentle pressure by biting on the sterilized gauze that has been placed over the surgical area. Bite on your gauze for 30 minutes to stop any bleeding. If bleeding continues, place another gauze and continue to apply pressure. Keep steady firm pressure for 45 minutes to one hour. Once the bleeding has stopped you may remove the gauze.

2. Do not rinse or use mouthwash for at least 24 hours.
After twenty-four hours, you should rinse with warm salt water (½ teaspoon of table salt dissolved in 8 ounces of warm water) or a prescription mouthwash every two to four hours. We do not recommend the use of commercial mouthwashes during the healing period.

3. If medications were given or prescribed, take them as instructed.
This will help reduce the discomfort that normally follows a dental surgery.

4. If the extraction area becomes more uncomfortable with time, call our office immediately. 
The extraction area should be reasonably comfortable for the first two or three days.

5. Avoid brushing the area of the mouth affected by the surgical procedure at first.
Continue to brush your teeth carefully in the rest of the mouth. Over time, as the area heals, you may carefully include the teeth around the surgical site. A clean mouth will heal faster.

6. Eat appropriate foods and drink enough fluids.
Nutrition is crucial to the healing process. You may want to try prepackaged protein shakes for the first few days following the procedure. When you feel as though you are able to, then you can begin to include soft foods in your diet again. Avoid spicy or grainy foods as they can stick to the surgical area.

7. Avoid excessive activity and external contaminants.
Do not pick at the surgical area. Do not consume liquids through a straw. Avoid alcoholic beverages. Refrain from smoking until healing is well established.

8. Control swelling though medication and by gently applying ice packs.
Ice packs should be applied to the area for periods of 20 minutes, with breaks of 10 minute intervals, for the first twenty-four hours.

9. For generalized rashes, itching, etc., call your dentist immediately.

10. Do not hesitate to call our office if you have any questions.

Temporary Crown:
Temporary crowns are designed to last 3-4 weeks while the permanent crowns are being customized to your tooth. The temporary protects the tooth underneath and maintains the space necessary for the perfect fit of your permanent crown. That is why we want the temporary to stay intact and on the tooth. Temporary crowns are usually quite fragile, unlike your permanent crown, and can break if put under the stress of eating hard or sticky foods such as candy, chips, etc. Please avoid the chewing of these foods on the temporary crown. If your temporary crown comes off rinse it off and push it back on. If it does not stay in place call our office. It is common for a tooth to be sensitive if the temporary crown comes off. The anesthetic used may affect your bite. If you are hitting this tooth first or harder than other teeth when biting down, contact our office for an adjustment. A high bite can lead to pain and sensitivity. You may brush regularly around the temporary crown but when flossing pull the floss straight down between the teeth then pull it straight out. Do not pull the floss back up as you normally would as this can pull the temporary off.

Periodontal Disease Treatment (Gum & Cleaning Work):
You may experience tenderness of your gums following this treatment. If you experience pain or discomfort you may take an over the counter non-aspirin pain medication. If this does not alleviate your pain please call our office. You may also rinse with warm salt water. Please avoid hard, crunchy, and spicy foods until the tenderness goes away. Brush your teeth at least twice a day even if your gums are tender or slightly bleed. Follow all home care instructions given by your dental hygienist. The most important part of periodontal disease treatment is to keep your recall appointments as directed. This is what insures the success of your treatment.