General Post Op Instructions
Reduce Your Physical Activity
- Rest, as much as possible for the next 24 hours. Avoid lying flat for the remainder of the day.
- Sleep with your head elevated for the next 4 days.
- Avoid strenuous activity for the next 4 days.
- If you had IV sedation, DO NOT drive, operate heavy equipment, use power tools, or sign legal documents for the next 24 hours.
How To Deal With Bleeding
- Gauze packs are in place over the surgical site(s) to help stop the bleeding.
- After 45 minutes remove the gauze, look at the surgical site(s). If the site(s) are still bleeding use new gauze provided and continue holding pressure. Be sure to place the gauze over the surgical site(s). Check the bleeding from the site(s) every hour, if you are no longer bleeding you do not have to insert more gauze.
- Some oozing is normal for the first 24 hours. You should expect to see some bloody saliva over the next several days.
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- Stitches may be in place. They will eventually come out on their own within 7 to 14 days.
- Do not pick or pull at anything in the mouth, if the stitches are bothering you call the office.
How To Reduce Swelling
- You can expect swelling for the next 3 to 4 days. The swelling will be the worst on days 2 and 3 and should start to gradually get better.
- You should keep an ice pack on the area as much as you can for the next 24 hours. Place it on the surgical for 30 minutes and then off for 10 minutes, or switch to another surgical site for 30 minutes. Do not ice while sleeping.
- After 36 hours, switch to moist heat.
- If you have dentures or a prosthesis in place, do not remove it as it helps to reduce the swelling.
How To Ease Pain
- It is normal for pain to get worse over the next couple of days. Most discomfort is seen on days 2 and 3. Take pain meds as directed.
- Start taking the Ibuprofen/Acetaminophen within 2-3 hours after surgery. Repeat the Ibuprofen/Acetaminophen every 6 hours for the next 3 to 4 days. This will help to decrease pain as well as swelling.
- For more severe pain, add the narcotic pain medicine in between doses of the Ibuprofen/Acetaminophen.
- Do not take the Ibuprofen/Acetaminophen and the narcotic pain medicine at the same time because this will likely make you sick. You should alternate the narcotic and Ibuprofen/Acetaminophen every 3 hours. Always take your medication with food; taking pain medication on an empty stomach can make you sick.
- Do not drive or operate machinery while taking narcotic pain medication.
What can I eat after surgery?
- Eat cold & soft foods the day of surgery (pudding, milkshakes, applesauce, yogurt, etc.)
- Drink as much clear fluids and water as possible.
- Maintain a soft diet for the next several days. Luke-warm soup, mashed potatoes, yogurt, pudding, etc. Keep your calorie intake up to promote healing. Boost, Ensure or Carnation Instant Breakfast are nutritious and will help keep your energy up as well.
- Avoid hot foods or liquids for the first 24 hours. This may aggravate bleeding and can burn you while your mouth is numb.
- Avoid foods like nuts, seeds, popcorn and hard crunchy foods for the first week.
- Do not smoke.
- Do not consume alcoholic beverages following surgery or while taking pain medication.
Keeping The Site Clean
- Try not to disturb the surgical area today. Do not rinse your mouth or brush your teeth today.
- Starting tomorrow, gently rinse with the prescribed antibacterial mouth rinse 3 to 4 times a day for the next week.
- Starting tomorrow, gently brush teeth being careful in the surgical area, unless the doctor has instructed otherwise.
- Starting a week after surgery use the curved tip syringe provided, fill it with warm salt water to flush the bottom surgical site(s) after eating.
- Do not vigorously rinse, swish, or spit for the next week.
Staff is available outside of office hours for postoperative concerns or information.
IF AN ANTIBIOTIC MEDICATION WAS PRESCRIBED MAKE SURE TO TAKE IT AS DIRECTED UNTIL COMPLETED