Our care for your comfort and well being doesn’t end when your procedure does. Our friendly team will always review post-op instructions with you based on your specific treatment so you know exactly what to expect. We encourage patients to call with questions following you’re appointment.
Below are several after-care instructions depending on your treatment.
Following a Tooth Extraction:
If you have recently had one or more teeth extracted, you will want to do all the right things for the area to heal quickly and smoothly.
The appearance of blood is normal in the hours following your procedure and may continue for a short time, or may even persist until the next day. Maintain a gentle pressure by biting on the gauze provided until the bleeding subsides.
If profuse bleeding or other problems occur, please call our office immediately.
Following a tooth extraction, the area will be tender for at least a couple of days. Pain varies from patient to patient. Take prescribed medication to manage pain and discomfort. For minor pain, ibuprofen taken as directed is best. Avoid taking aspirin or products containing aspirin. Aspirin thins your blood and can interfere with blood clotting and the healing process. In turn, this can lead to dry sockets and severe pain.
Preventing Dry Socket:
During the first 24 hours after a tooth extraction, your body will begin to naturally heal, and a “clot” will form where the tooth was pulled. A dry socket occurs when the blood clot for healing becomes dislodged or doesn’t form, leaving the tooth socket unprotected and exposing it to air, food, and liquids.
- Do not disturb the tooth socket by sucking, spitting, or exploring the area with your tongue.
- Do NOT rinse your mouth for the first 24 hours following surgery.
- During the healing period, of at least a week, do not smoke, drink carbonated or alcoholic beverages, or drink through a straw.
Dry socket delays the healing process and can be very painful. If you suspect dry socket, call our office.
Beginning 24 hours post-op you can return to your usual brushing routine. Keep the extraction site clean by gently rinsing with warm salt water 4-5 times daily to clean out any food debris. Patients at an increased risk of infection may be placed on a preventive antibiotic medication.
Bruising and Swelling:
Swelling and bruising are normal following a tooth extraction. It usually peaks 48-72 hours after your treatment and should begin to go away about the third day. For the first 24 hours following your procedure, apply ice packs to the facial area of your procedure in 15 minute increments.
After the numbness has worn off, drink a lot of fluids, eat soft foods, and chew on the opposite side of your mouth. You can begin brushing and flossing normally after 24 hours while cleaning gently around the site until it heals.
Following a Root Canal:
- Some discomfort for up to a week is normal following a root canal. Once the anesthesia begins to wear off, usually within an hour after treatment, take an over-the-counter pain reliever to help with any discomfort.
- Be gentle with the temporary filling we place and avoid sticky or hard foods. Chew on the opposite side from the treatment area. Continue doing so until your permanent crown or filling is placed.
- Avoid chewing gum and sticky candy that could dislodge your temporary crown or filling.
- You can begin brushing and flossing normally immediately.
Following a Tooth Filling:
- Some discomfort is expected following a tooth filling. Most of the time, the pain will go away quickly after taking some over the counter pain reliever.
- Avoid eating anything for at least an hour after your procedure or until after the numbness subsides.
- Avoid chewing on the side of the mouth that has the new filling, for 24 hours after your appointment, until the filling is completely hard.
- If you experience pain that continues to persist after several days, please contact us.
Following a Dental Crown Placement:
When it comes to repairing damaged teeth dental crowns are an excellent option. They cover the entire tooth offering protection to the damaged tooth beneath it. Dental Crowns are strong, durable, and resilient — much like your natural tooth enamel.
Whether you’ve just had a temporary or permanent crown placed, you may experience tenderness in the gum area for a few days. You can use a topical anesthetic, like Orajel, and take ibuprofen to lessen any discomfort.
You may experience slight temperature sensitivity. This is normal and should diminish within a day or two.
A few precautions should be taken following a dental crown being placed on your tooth.
- Avoid eating until the numbness wears off, and be careful not to bite your tongue or the inside of your cheek.
- Avoid chewing anything very hard or sticky for the first 48 hrs following your procedure.
- Chew on the opposite of the mouth.
- Eat soft food for the first week.
- Brush as usual, but floss with care.
If you have any other questions or concerns please call our office. Our friendly team is here to help ensure you recover smoothly after your procedure!