After Surgery

Bleeding: Biting on the gauze pads will probably be necessary at least for the first few hours to control bleeding (changing them every 15 minutes or so). Keep the head elevated and rest. Do not spit or rinse excessively or engage in physical activity since this stimulates bleeding. Some oozing could last up to 24 hours. If heavy bleeding persists, replace the gauze with a clean folded gauze pad over the surgery site and maintain pressure until the bleeding stops. Call your doctor if bleeding doesn't stop or is heavy for too long.

Swelling: This is normal following a surgical procedure in the mouth. It should reach its maximum in 48 hours and then diminish by the fifth post operative day. The anti-swelling medicine we usually give cuts it way down to less than of what it would normally be. Place cold compresses (not ice) on the face in the region of the surgery for ten minutes every half hour for the first eight to 12 hours. Cold compresses is only effective on the day of surgery.

Discomfort: The most discomfort that you will experience will occur as the anesthetic wears off (usually 1-2 hours after surgery). Do not wait for the pain to become severe before taking the medications since the medicine will require 30-45 minutes to take effect. Pain will gradually diminish over the next few days.

Smoking: If you smoke , avoid smoking during the first week after surgery.

Diet: A nutritious liquid diet is necessary for the first day. Hard foods eaten while you are numb can dislodge the gums that were lifted up and then sutured in place. When the numbness wears off , you can gradually progress to harder foods. Especially in the first three months after surgery, you should take care of your diet to improve osseointegration of the implant.Take Vitamin C from natural sources like fresh juices, kiwi , strawberry , orange, grapefruit and apple. Consume milk and yogurt.

Activity: For the first 24-48 hours , you should rest in head up position. Patients who have sedation should refrain from driving an automobile or from engaging in any task that requires alertness for the next 24 hours.

Starting The Day After Surgery:

  1. Brush teeth but avoid the surgery area. As healing takes place , you can gradually brush teeth near the surgery site. For the first weeks , use a soft toothbrush or soften the bristles by placing them under hot water.
  2. Use warm salt water as a mouth rinse 3-5 times per day for 5-7 days after surgery.
  3. If antibiotics are prescribed , be sure to take them all as directed. They can render birth control pills ineffective.
  4. Don't chew hard (even on a hard crust of bread or on ice) for 4-6 weeks or participate in sports where you may hit in the jaw.

Contact The Doctor If:

  1. Bleeding is excessive and cannot be controlled.
  2. Discomfort is poorly controlled.
  3. Swelling is excessive, spreading , or continuing to enlarge after 48 hours.
  4. Allergies or other reactions to medications occur.