After Tooth Extraction

POST OPERATIVE INSTRUCTIONS

  1. If you have received IV sedation, a responsible adult must accompany you from the facility to home, and remain with you until the next morning.
  2. GET PRESCRIPTIONS FILLED. 
  3. TAKE GAUZE OUT UPON ARRIVING HOME.
  4. GET SOMETHING SOFT TO EAT Examples: Jell-O, pudding, yogurt, ice cream, applesauce, oatmeal, cream of wheat, eggs or creamed potatoes. Anything normally served hot should be allowed to cool to room temperature before eating.
  5. TAKE MEDICATIONS AS DIRECTED.   Make sure to eat before starting medications to prevent nausea. Avoid alcoholic beverages.  If an anti-inflammatory medication was not given, you can take Motrin or Ibuprofen 200mg, 3 tablets 3 times a day.
  6. REPLACE GAUZE AS DIRECTED BELOW:
    • Place MOISTENED GAUZE PAD OVER THE TOOTH EXTRACTION SITE(S), (for wisdom teeth it MUST be placed past the last remaining teeth) and BITE DOWN AND MAINTAIN CONSTANT PRESSURE FOR 30-45 MINUTES.    After 30- 45 minutes, remove the gauze pads and evaluate amount of bleeding.
    • FOR MINIMAL BLEEDING (quarter size spots)- Do not replace gauze
    • FOR MODERATE OR CONSTANT BLEEDING- PLACE NEW GAUZE PAD OVER THE EXTRACTION SITE(S), BITE DOWN AND MAINTAIN CONSTANT PRESSURE FOR 30-45 MINUTES.   Remove the gauze pads and evaluate amount of bleeding.
    • Repeat gauze and pressure process again for at least 45 minutes as needed.  You can expect to have some oozing of blood from the extraction sites throughout the first 24 hours, but it should not be constant bright red bleeding.
    • IF YOU RUN OUT OF GAUZE, YOU CAN USE A WET TEA BAG MOISTENED WITH COLD WATER AND REPEAT PRESSURE PROCESS AGAIN.  IF YOU FEEL BLEEDING IS EXCESSIVE, PLEASE CALL OUR OFFICE.
  7. Restrict your activities the day of surgery and resume normal activity when you feel comfortable.
  8. You may have dissolvable sutures in place.  If these were to come out today, that is Okay, we would not have to replace them.  We do encourage you not to disturb them so that they will help slow bleeding.  
  9. DRINK FLUIDS:   You should prevent dehydration by taking fluids regularly.  At least 5-6 glasses of liquid should be taken daily.  If you suddenly sit up or stand from a lying position you may become dizzy.  If you are lying down following surgery, make sure you sit for one minute before standing.
  10. BRUISING is bleeding under the skin and may appear as blue or black discoloration that then fades to brown, green, and yellow.  Swelling and bruising will tend to move down into the neck and sometimes even to the chest, due to gravity over time.  This is normal and requires no treatment, unless swallowing or breathing are impaired.
  11. SWELLING.    Swelling is often associated with oral surgery. Keep your head elevated while resting or sleeping for 3-5 days after surgery to minimize swelling.  Swelling may be worse on your third day after surgery.  Also, try using a cold pack, ice bag, or a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a towel and applied firmly to the cheek adjacent to the surgical area.  This should by applied twenty minutes on and twenty minutes off during the first 24 hours after surgery.  If you have swelling or jaw stiffness after the first 24 hours you can apply moist heat or a heating pad several times throughout the day.  If you have been prescribed medicine for the control of swelling, be sure to take it as directed.
  12. SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR PATIENTS WITH MULTIPLE EXTRACTIONS AND DENTURES
    • Try to leave denture(s) in until the next morning.
    • Do not chew with denture(s).  Soft food only until re-evaluated at follow-up
    • Remove denture(s) in AM, rinse mouth gently, clean denture(s) and place denture(s) back in mouth
    • Leave denture(s) in mouth as much as possible during the day.
    • Take denture(s) out at night to allow gums to rest and heal.
    • Place your denture(s) back in the mouth in the AM and remove at night unless instructed to do differently.
    • You may massage gums with wet washcloth when tenderness subsides to help the healing process.
    • Keep your appointment with your dentist for denture adjustments.
  13.  FOR THE NEXT 3-5 DAYS:
    • DO NOT USE STRAWS
    • DO NOT EAT OR DRINK ANYTHING HOT
    • DO NOT EXPECTORATE (SPIT OUT). This will cause bleeding to continue as well as dislodge the clot in the extraction site(s) which is known as a “DRY SOCKET” .
    • SOFT DIET ONLY. Examples: Jell-O, pudding, yogurt, ice cream, applesauce, oatmeal, cream of wheat, eggs or creamed potatoes. Anything normally served hot should be allowed to cool to room temperature before eating.
    • Gradually return to a normal diet as tolerated unless otherwise directed.   If a food is causing discomfort when eating or the jaws become achy after eating, don’t try to continue to eat foods of that consistency.  Return to softer non-chewy foods for at least a day.  If it hurts at lunch it will hurt at dinner.  A simple rule of thumb:  if it hurts when you eat that, don’t eat that.
    • DO NOT SMOKE FOR THE NEXT 3-5 days

      FOR THE NEXT 5 WEEKS:

    • NO CHIPS, POPCORN, OR PEANUTS (can get lodged in socket)
  14. OFFICE CALLS:  During regular office hours (8 AM to 5 PM Monday through Thursday and 8 AM to 12 PM on Friday) there will be staff members available to answer problems and questions at Greenville Office Phone Number 864-458-9800 or 864-442-6564.
    • If necessary, your phone message and chart will be given to Dr. Williams to address any further questions or concerns.  Please be sure to provide a phone number where you can be reached in the evening.
    • Prescription refills will only be called in during regular business hours, as your records need to be available for Dr. Williams. 
    • Dr. Williams will not be able to refill a controlled substance prescription after office hours.  
    • After hours, or on days the office is closed, Dr. Williams can be paged through our answering service for urgent or emergency calls only.   If your call is not returned within 30 minutes, please contact the answering service again.  Please remember Dr. Williams may be handling emergencies.

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