Postoperative Instructions


Wound Care

  • Bite firmly on gauze that has been placed for the next 2 hours, then remove it gently. Place more as needed and keep in place for minimum of 2 hours. Do not change the gauze too often.
  • Do not peek.
  • Do not smoke for 72 hours because this will promote bleeding and interfere with healing and cause dry socket, very painful and hard to treat.


  • Some blood will ooze from the area of surgery and is normal. You may find a blood stain on your pillow in the morning. 
  • Do not spit or suck through a straw, since this promotes bleeding. 
  • If bleeding begins again, place a small damp gauze pack or tea bag directly over the tooth socket and bite firmly for 30 minutes.
  • Keep your head elevated with several pillows or sit in a lounge chair.


  • Some discomfort is normal after surgery. It can be controlled but not eliminated by taking the pain pills your dentist prescribed. 
  • Take your pain pills with a whole glass of water and with small amount of food if the pills cause nausea. 
  • Do not drive or drink alcohol if you take prescription pain pills.


  • It is important to drink a large volume of fluids. Do not drink through a straw, because this may promote bleeding. 
  •  Cold, soft food such as ice cream or yogurt may be the most comfortable for the first day.

Oral Hygiene

  • Do not rinse your mouth or brush your teeth for the first 24 hours after surgery.
  • After that, rinse gently with warm salt water (1/2 teaspoon of salt 8oz of warm water) every 4 hours. 
  • Brush your teeth gently but avoid area of surgery.


  • Swelling after surgery is a normal body reaction. It reaches its maximum about 48 hours after surgery and usually lasts up to 4 to 6 days. 
  • Applying ice packs over the area of surgery for 20 minutes on and off for the first 24 hrs. helps control swelling decrease discomfort.


  • Avoid strenuous activity for 48 hours after surgery or as directed by the Doctor. Rest for the rest of today


  • You may experience some mild bruising in the area of your surgery. This is a normal response in some persons and should not be a cause for alarm. It will disappear in 7 to 14 days.


  • After surgery you may experience jaw muscle stiffness and limited opening of your mouth. This is normal and will improve in 5 to 10 days. 


  • If stitches have been placed in the area of your surgery, you will need to have them removed in about 1 week. 


  • You experience excessive discomfort that you cannot control with your pain pills.
  • You have bleeding that you cannot control by biting on gauze. 
  • You have increased swelling after the third day following your surgery. 
  • You feel that you have a fever.
  • You have any questions. 

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