× Attention: Important COVID-19 Appointment Information

Post-Operative Instructions

NO SMOKING – Smoking can complicate your healing process and could lead to failure. It is preferred that you do not smoke throughout your healing process.  *If you do choose to smoke, you do so at your own risk. 

BLEEDING – Some bleeding or redness in the saliva is normal for 24 hours.  Excessive bleeding (i.e. – your mouth fills rapidly with blood) can be controlled by biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound site for 1-2 hours. After this time, gauze may be discarded and replaced. Remove gauze when you eat or sleep. If bleeding continues, please call us for further instructions.

SWELLING – Swelling is normal following oral surgery. To minimize swelling, apply an ice pack or plastic bag/towel filled with ice to the cheek on the side of the area of surgery. Apply the ice alternately for the first 48 hours (30 minutes on/30 minutes off). After 48 hours, begin using a warm compress, which can be made by soaking a towel in hot water, wringing it, folding into a square, and placing it on the cheek for up to 20 minutes.  

DIET – Avoid chewing hard foods at the surgical site. Soft foods and liquids should be eaten on the first day. Avoid hot liquids and food. Do not consume any dairy products for the first 24 hours. Do not drink from a straw!

PAIN – Unless you have received different instructions from the doctor, take Motrin and Tylenol as directed. Remember that narcotic pain medications can slow reflexes and make you groggy, making driving and operating machinery dangerous. If pain or swelling increases after the first 3 days, call our office.  

*Do not take any of the above medications if you are allergic or have been instructed by your doctor not to take them. 

We recommend the following pain regiment:

Tylenol 325mg – 3hr →Motrin 600mg – 3 hr →Tylenol 325mg – 3 hr →Motrin 600mg

ANTIBIOTICS – If antibiotics have been prescribed, take them as directed until gone. Taking antibiotics may cause birth control pills to be ineffective so use an alternative birth control method while taking antibiotics.


ORAL HYGIENE – Avoid chewing hard foods on the surgical sites. Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing. So, you may brush your teeth in non-surgical sites (and healing abutments if they have been placed) but be gentle with brushing the surgical sites. We will provide you an ultra-soft toothbrush for the surgical site and give you specific instructions.


VIGOROUS MOUTH RINSING AND USING STRAWS FOLLOWING SURGERY SHOULD BE AVOIDED – In the healing process, a blood clot is forming. Rinsing or using a straw may cause bleeding by causing the blood clot that has formed to dislodge.  

You may begin gentle rinsing with water, saltwater, or mouthrinses 24 hours after surgery:

  • Warm salt water: mix ½ tsp of salt in a glass of lukewarm water. Rinse 30 sec-1 minute (gently rinse/let it run out of your mouth/do not spit)
  • Peridex prescription mouthrinse: Start 24 hours after surgery (gently rinse/let it run out of your mouth/do not spit)

ACTIVITY – Restrict activities the day of surgery and preferably the next day. Rest and keep your head up/elevated. You may resume normal activities 3-5 days after surgery.

WEARING YOUR PROSTHESIS – Partial dentures, flippers, full dentures, or other mouthguards should not be used immediately after surgery for at least 7 days unless otherwise discussed.  

SUTURES – Depending on the type of sutures placed, they will either be removed at your post-operative appointment or fall out on their own within 1-5 days. Please refrain from disturbing sutures.  

If you have any questions or concerns about your progress, please call our office at 717-551-1511.