After an extraction, it is important to keep firm pressure on the extraction site (socket) to help stop the bleeding and to begin the healing process. Place pressure on the gauze that was placed at surgery for thirty minutes.
If the bleeding or oozing persists, place an additional gauze pad and press firmly for another 30 minutes. You may do this several times until the bleeding slows down. Once the clotting forms, it is important not to disturb the area. Do not rinse vigorously or brush harshly. Avoid pulling or lifting lip/cheeks it may tear the sutures if any were placed. Limit smoking as it can delay healing. Limit vigorous exercise at least the first 24-48 hours as increasing your blood pressure may cause increased pain or swelling.
It is quite normal to have pain and swelling post treatment. An ice pack or unopened bag of frozen peas applied to the area the first 24 hours after surgery will assist in minimizing swelling. Apply the ice pack intermittently, on 20 minutes off 20 minutes, to the facial area where the surgery was done. Leave it off during the nighttime and resume in the morning until 24 hours after treatment. Swelling usually begins within 24 hours of surgery and can peak in 48 hours. It takes time for the pain and swelling to dissipate, but if it gets worse or develops a hardness to it, then you may require an antibiotic. Please call our office if you experience this or it gets worse after 72 hours.
Use prescription pain medication as directed for severe pain. Call the office if the pain medication does not appear to be working. Mild pain can be managed with OTC medication like ibuprofen/Advil/Motrin and or acetaminophen/Tylenol. Follow the dosing instruction you have been given by the doctor or use the directions found on the package.
If antibiotics are prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length of time, even if signs and symptoms of infection are resolved. Drink lots of fluid and eat nutritious soft food on the day of surgery. You can eat normal foods, avoiding the side of surgery, as soon as you are comfortable doing so.
It is important to resume good oral hygiene, brushing and flossing carefully in the areas that were not affected by the surgery. Use salt water rinse (half glass of warm water with pinch of salt) and/or prescription rinse given by the doctor as directed 3-4 times per day, as it will assist in healing.
After 72 hours, you can resume normal activities. If you have heavy bleeding, increased swelling after 3 days, or a medication reaction, call our office immediately.