Pre-Op and Post-Op Instructions for Oral Surgery

Pre-Op Instructions

Pre-Op Instructions

Take prescribed medication (antibiotics) for the recommended length of time. The night before your periodontal surgery:

  • If your oral surgery is to be in the morning and you are receiving intravenous sedation, please do not eat any later than midnight. If you are taking oral sedation only, you may have a small glass of clear apple juice and plain toast or crackers, and you may eat a low-fat meal, a minimum of two hours before the oral surgery. Regardless of the type of sedation, you will have, take your pre-medication (antibiotic and Motrin) with a small glass of clear apple juice.
  • Please abstain from alcoholic beverages 24 hours prior to oral surgery, and while taking pain medication.
  • If an anti-inflammatory has been prescribed (Motrin or Ibuprofen), begin taking it one hour before your appointment, as well as your antibiotic.
  • If oral or IV sedation is being used, please arrange for your transportation and escort from the office. (And this cannot be a taxi or limo service.)
  • Please rinse thoroughly with Peridex for one full minute, one hour prior to oral surgery.

Patients Undergoing Intravenous Anesthesia

A physical examination and pre-operative consultation is required for anyone who will be undergoing IV sedation. Please do not eat or drink for at least eight hours before your appointment. You will need to arrange transportation home after your appointment. You will be provided with pre-operative and post-operative instructions. It is important that you read and adhere to them.

It is important for the patient to understand and follow all instructions relating to anesthesia. An unwillingness to do so may result in cancellation of the procedure.

  1. Food and drink

Don’t eat or drink anything for six hours prior to the time of your appointment. Patients who have a morning procedure should have no food or liquid after midnight. Those with an afternoon appointment time should consume a light meal appropriately (consumed no later than six hours before treatment time). The exception to this is you may have one glass of clear apple juice two hours before oral surgery.

  1. Medications

Before scheduling anesthesia, tell the doctor what medications you regularly take. You should take these medications on schedule with a small drink of juice or water unless you have been instructed differently.

  1. Clothing and Make-Up

Sleeveless or short-sleeved shirts are preferable. Comfortable pants and flat-heeled shoes are also recommended. Please do not wear “one-piece” outfits, as we will place heart monitors on the shoulders and waist area, and remove finger nail polish for our blood oxygen monitor. If you wear contact lenses, they will need to be removed prior to administering anesthetic. We ask that you do not bring any valuables.

  1. Changes in Health

Contact our office as soon as possible if there are any changes in your health, particularly a cold, flu, or fever. As a precautionary measure, your appointment may be rescheduled.

  1. Arriving

Do not drive if you have been prescribed a pre-medication; you will need to arrange transportation to our office. We ask that you arrive for your appointment early. So that we can administer the pre-operative oral medication.

  1. Getting Home

You will not be able to drive yourself home, so be sure that you have arranged for a reliable adult to accompany you. Allow 24 hours, at minimum, for the anesthesia to fade before driving, operating equipment, or making important decisions. Don’t take a taxi or ride the bus. The reliable adult should remain with you until the next day. When you return home, you should rest and be watched closely. Too much activity may induce nausea, though resting on a bed or couch will reduce it.

  1. Pain

There may be some discomfort or pain, depending on what procedure was performed. You should take any prescribed medication according to directions.

  1. Drinking and eating after the procedure

Drink plain water before anything else. Sweet liquids such as sports drinks or juice can be next. Do not consume alcohol for at least 24 hours. You can eat when you feel ready. It is important to choose soft foods and don’t eat anything hot. Protein shakes are excellent.

  1. Intravenous Site

In rare cases, there is redness, tenderness, or both in the hand or arm. This is caused by chemical phlebitis, which is associated with IV procedures. To prevent this from occurring, apply moist heat (100° F) to that arm and keep it elevated. If it does happen, contact us and take an anti-inflammatory medicine.

  1. Seek Advice

If vomiting persists beyond four hours, or if a temperature remains elevated beyond 24 hours, seek advice (call us or your doctor).

Post-Op Instructions

Post-Op Instructions

After a Soft Tissue Graft Healing Process

If donor tissue was not used, the most problematic area will be the palate, where the tissue was removed for grafting. Skin inside of the mouth does not form scabs, so this will look ulcerated. This is NOT A CAUSE FOR CONCERN – it is a NORMAL PART OF THE HEALING PROCESS.

Bleeding is the most frequent issue. It may be triggered by slight trauma, eating, speaking, or other normal activities. DON’T PANIC. If a guard has been made for you, place it in your mouth, applying firm but gentle pressure – just enough to stop the bleeding. Continue applying pressure for at least five minutes. Be sure to remove any large, loose clots before you apply pressure. Wear the guard continuously for the first 24 hours. Wear it as often as you like after the first 24 hours. The guard is for your comfort, especially when eating. If you don’t have a guard then a tea bag soaked in cold water and applied with 10 minutes of pressure will usually stop any oozing.

A Proper Diet for Healing

Incidents of bleeding can happen occasionally, up to one week following oral surgery, especially if you haven’t been consuming high protein foods. Good nutrition is also essential for rapid healing. Tuna is high in protein, and we have found that it has a dramatic effect on healing. We advise eating a can each day during your healing process. Supplemental protein liquid meals are another excellent source of nutrition. Stress-tabs (a vitamin) may be purchased at any pharmacy. The high zinc and vitamin C content included in this formula promotes healing. Take one or two a day. You can maximize absorption by taking supplements in the middle of your meal. You will have a faster and more comfortable recovery if you avoid acidic, spicy, salty, and sugary foods. Smoking inhibits circulation, thereby slowing the healing process. Smokers will need to cut back dramatically or, better yet, quit to allow for proper healing.

Care

If dressing is used, take care that you do not dislodge it. This is important as we strive for full root coverage. To prevent swelling, an ice pack may be used on the grafted area after oral surgery. You should alternate using the ice pack for 20 minutes then removing it for 20 minutes. Continue this for three or four hours following oral surgery.

Use a Peridex rinse twice daily for 60 seconds, beginning 24 hours after the procedure. If this causes staining, after one week you can dab Peridex directly on the site of the graft as well as the donor site, using a cotton swab. The day after your oral surgery, you can brush other areas of your mouth carefully, but avoid the healing areas for about three weeks. Try to avoid dislodging the dressing, but if this happens, call our office at 855-595-1871.

Post-Op Composite Fillings

Post-Op Composite Fillings

Composite resin fillings are a beautiful, long-lasting way to eliminate cavities and restore your smile. Because the procedure is gentle and conservative, post-operative discomfort and special care requirements are minimal. Local anesthetic is used to ensure your comfort during the procedure. This will result in numbness of the lips, tongue, and cheeks, which will take some time to fade. Avoid hot foods and beverages during this time, because you may burn yourself and not realize it. Similarly, do not chew or bite down on anything because you may inadvertently bite your tongue or lip.

The fillings are completely hardened by the time you leave our office. After the anesthetic wears off, you will be able to chew normally and eat anything you want. If your bite seems to be uneven or chewing is uncomfortable, please contact our office. It may take some time for you to adjust to the changes, especially if several teeth were filled. However, on rare occasions, minor adjustments to the restoration may be necessary. Dr. Lynn wants to ensure that the bite is even and comfortable to prevent pain and tooth damage in the future.

You may experience mild root sensitivity, particularly to temperature or pressure. This is not a cause for concern unless it persists for more than a few days. There may also be some soreness at the site of the anesthetic injection. This is also normal and it should fade quickly. Over the counter pain medication, such as ibuprofen or aspirin, should help control any pain you experience. If you still have any pain or sensitivity after several days, contact our office. Contact us sooner if the symptoms become worse rather than fade away.

Brush and floss as normal, taking extra care to clean around the margins (edges) of the filling. One of the most common reasons that fillings and other dental restorations fail is because there are cavities in the underlying tooth. Good hygiene practices and regular dental care can keep your restored tooth beautiful and healthy for many years.

If you have any questions, concerns, or problems, please contact our office at 855-595-1871. The friendly team at Lynn Dental Care in Dallas Texas will be more than happy to help!

Post-Op Cosmetic Reconstruction

Post-Op Cosmetic Reconstruction

Cosmetic reconstruction often improves the bite by restoring worn down or damaged teeth and replacing missing teeth. It is important to understand that it takes several days to adjust to these changes. Your brain needs time to recognize the new position of teeth as normal, at first anything different may be perceived as uncomfortable. If, after a few days, you still feel discomfort, high spots, or any other bite issues, please contact our office. If necessary, Dr. Lynn will make adjustments.

Care and Healing

You will need to allow your mouth some healing time after tooth structure has been altered. It is normal to experience tooth sensitivity and some gum soreness. Rinse with tepid salt water (about one teaspoon of salt per eight ounces of water) three times daily to reduce swelling and pain. A mild over the counter pain reliever, such as ibuprofen, can help relieve discomfort.

Do not be alarmed if you have difficulty speaking at first. It takes a few days to adapt to the changes. Many patients discover their speech is clearer once they adjust, than it was before the procedure, especially if missing teeth were replaced. In response to new tooth size and shape, your brain may signal an increase in saliva flow. This typically subsides within a week.

Good oral hygiene is imperative to the long-term success of dental restorations. Be sure to brush and floss regularly and thoroughly, and visit us for regular checkups.

Foods or habits that have potential to chip, crack, or otherwise damage natural teeth also pose a risk to your newly restored teeth. Avoid chewing on hard objects such as pencils, and don’t open bottles or packages with your teeth. Chewing ice or eating foods such as peanut brittle and beer nuts can also damage your teeth. Smoking or using other tobacco products can stain your new smile. Try to avoid stain-causing foods and beverages such as coffee, tea, and berries.

If you participate in sports, talk to Dr. Lynn about a protective mouth guard. Patients with bruxism (teeth grinding) can be fitted with a preventive night guard. Remember to give yourself some time to adjust to the appearance and feel of your new smile. As always, if you have any questions or concerns, you are encouraged to call Lynn Dental Care at 855-595-1871.

Post-Op Tooth Extractions

Post-Op Tooth Extractions

Controlling bleeding

Following a tooth extraction, a blood clot forms in the socket, this stops the bleeding and begins the process of healing. For this reason, after the procedure is completed, we will ask that you bite down on a small piece of gauze, for around 35 to 40 minutes. If the bleeding continues, you may need to use an additional gauze pad, and bite down for about half an hour. We will recommend that you repeat this step several times if necessary until bleeding subsides.

Once the blood clot has formed, you will need to be careful not to dislodge it. For this reason, you will need to avoid smoking, drinking through straws, consuming alcohol, or brushing your teeth for 72 hours. For the next 24 hours, strenuous exercise should be limited because it increases blood pressure.

Controlling swelling

You may experience mild pain or swelling following a tooth extraction. Apply an ice pack to the area to reduce swelling. If you don’t have an ice pack on hand, a bag of frozen corn or peas works well.

Relieving pain

Take any prescribed pain medications according to directions. If your medication does not seem effective, please call our office. If antibiotics were prescribed, it is important to take the full prescription as directed, even if all symptoms are gone. This will help prevent infection, which can lead to other complications.

Food and drink

On the day of your appointment, you will need to drink plenty of liquids and soft, nutritious foods. Following the extraction, you can resume normal eating as soon as it feels comfortable unless otherwise directed.

Good oral hygiene

You should resume brushing and flossing normally after 72 hours. This helps your mouth heal more quickly, as well as feeling clean and fresh. You should feel fine and be able to resume your normal daily activities within a few days of your appointment. Please call our office at 855-595-1871 immediately if you have any questions, or experience any problems such as severe pain, heavy bleeding, adverse reaction to medication, or swelling that does not recede within two or three days.

Post-Op Wisdom Teeth Extractions

Post-Op Wisdom Teeth Extractions

What to expect

Surgical tooth extraction, which is necessary for removing impacted wisdom teeth, is very different from a standard tooth extraction. Please be aware that the following after effects may occur as a normal part of healing. They are not cause for alarm:

  • Swelling should be expected at the site of the oral surgery. It may continue to increase for about two or three days after the procedure before it begins to recede.
  • Stiff muscles may occur for several days. This can make opening and closing your mouth difficult.
  • You may develop a mild, temporary earache or sore throat.
  • Due to referred pain, your remaining teeth may ache. This is temporary and harmless.
  • You may develop dry, uncomfortable, cracked lips. We recommend using ointment or lip balm to keep the skin moisturized.
  • You will notice a hollow space where the tooth had been. Beginning 24 hours after the procedure, you should rinse thoroughly after meals to clean this area. It will heal and fill with healthy tissue over time.
  • You may have a slight increase in temperature for one or two days. If the problem persists past 48 hours, contact our office.
  • Bruising and tenderness may develop around the oral surgery.
  • It is important that you take all prescribed prescription medications. Women should be aware that antibiotics have the potential to diminish the effectiveness of oral contraceptives – please speak with your physician or trusted pharmacist.

Controlling bleeding

After the tooth is extracted, the doctor will place gauze over the area. You will need to bite down on the gauze and maintain a steady pressure. This helps to control the initial bleeding and aid in the formation of a blood clot. When the local anesthetic has worn off, remove the compress gently.

Minor bleeding may persist after a period of 24 hours. Moist tea bags may be used to apply pressure if necessary. Carefully resume oral hygiene as soon as the bleeding has subsided.

Pain relief

Take any pain medication that was prescribed according to directions. You should begin as soon as the oral surgery is completed, to increase your comfort as the anesthesia wears off and normal feeling returns. Continue taking your medication as directed, and use an ice pack if pain persists over 24 hours.

Control swelling

An ice pack or cold compress should be used immediately after the procedure to help control swelling. We recommend that you alternate use of the compress, holding on the area for 20 minutes, and then removing it for 20 minutes. A plastic bag filled with crushed ice makes a good compress, though you will need to wrap it in a soft cloth to avoid harming your skin.

You need not use a cold compress for swelling after 24 hours. Some swelling may persist for 10 to 14 days, accompanied by a temperature of 99° to 100° F.

Special considerations

  • The procedure for extracting impacted wisdom teeth is an oral surgery. There is the potential for postoperative problems, and we advise you to take extra care to prevent complications.
  • The level of pain varies from one individual to another, depending on several factors, including your general health. Please take the pain medicine that was prescribed to you.
  • The rate of healing is variable.
  • Swelling is normal. Please use ice packs after the procedure, as indicated above.
  • Expect to experience some difficulties opening and closing your mouth as well as swallowing.
  • Numbness in your tongue or lip is normal and to be expected.

Hygiene

A warm, salt water rinse should be used 24 hours after the procedure. Use half a tablespoon of salt dissolved in a warm (not hot) glass of water. You should gently rinse your mouth every time you eat for at least one week after the procedure. This helps promote healing and keeps the area free of debris and food particles.

To help reduce bacterial growth, clean your tongue with a dry toothbrush, being very careful not to touch the area of the oral surgery. Resume your normal brushing and flossing routine, but take care not to dislodge the clot at the extraction site.

Nutrition

Good nutrition is essential for proper healing. If you eat soft, healthy foods with plenty of protein in the weeks following your appointment, you will most likely heal faster, experience less discomfort, and feel better.

Avoid any foods containing spices, peppers, tomatoes, or onions as these will be irritating. Fruit juice may cause a burning sensation. This can be avoided by drinking through a straw; however, it is important to note that a straw should not be used within the first 24 hours after the procedure.

The following foods are recommended as they provide adequate minerals and vitamins. When necessary, you can use a blender to liquefy foods for easier consumption.

BREAKFAST

  • Protein drinks, milk, Instant Breakfast, coffee, tea, Ovaltine, or hot chocolate
  • Fresh fruit juice consumed using a straw. Mashed prunes or stewed fruits
  • Milk toast, grits and butter, Cream of Wheat, other hot cereals

LUNCH AND DINNER

  • Soups, bullion, home cooked broth
  • Soft broiled ground beef crumbled into small bits and mixed with mashed potatoes
  • Stewed or baked fish. If you eat fried fish, remove the crisp outer crust.
  • Soft cooked eggs, chicken with dumplings or noodles, oyster stew
  • Mashed string beans, lima beans, carrots, peas, asparagus
  • Baked apples, canned pears, cheese soufflé, cream cheese
  • Jell-O, pudding, custard
  • Yogurt, cottage cheese
  • Sego, Carnation Slender, Nutriment, or protein shakes can be added three to four times daily as a supplement
  • Fresh vegetable juice
  • Vitamin B complex, Vitamin C, and Vitamin E can promote healing. If any additional vitamins have been prescribed, be sure to take them on schedule

REMEMBER: Choose soft foods that will not irritate sensitive tissues. You can chew providing it is not difficult or painful. Some or all of the dressing around your teeth will likely come off as your chewing ability improves, but this should not pose a problem.

IMPORTANT: Hunger makes a person nervous and irritable. Scientific studies have also shown that hunger increases an individual’s susceptibility to pain. We cannot overstate the importance of proper nutrition, particularly when healing from an oral surgery.

Antibiotics alter the friendly bacteria in your digestive system. We highly recommend consuming yogurt with active cultures in the weeks following the procedure. It helps restore the bacterial balance.

IN CASE OF PROBLEMS: Ideally, you should not have any problems if you follow your dentist’s instructions carefully. If you have any questions or concerns, you are encouraged to call our office. If you have excessive pain, bleeding, or difficulty opening and closing your mouth, please call us right away.

A postoperative follow-up appointment will be scheduled so that we can monitor your progress and ensure the oral surgery is healing properly. Please call our office at 855-595-1871 immediately if you have any questions. In the meantime, practice good oral hygiene and eat a healthy diet.

Lynn Dental Care for Your Oral Surgery Needs

Lynn Dental Care takes great strides to ensure you are prepared for your surgery and that you heal properly after your surgery. We want you to be as comfortable as possible.