Self Care Following Dental Treatment

Self Care Following Simple Dental Surgery

Placement of a Dental Implant
Bone Grafting and Tissue Graft
Tooth Removal

The better you care for yourself over the next 48 to 96 hours, the more comfortable you will be and the faster you will recover. The following are things you can do that will make you more comfortable.

DO NOT SMOKE or use any tobacco products for the first 48 hours. Smoking is the most common cause of problems like ‘dry socket’.

Avoid strenuous physical activity for at least 48 hours.

Keep dressings in place over the surgery sites as directed.

Keep ice packs against the side of your face for the first day after surgery. Put a layer of towel between you and the ice. Pressure and cold will help control both swelling and pain.

After 24 hours use heat packs to reduce any swelling that has occurred. Exercising your jaw (chewing gum) after the first 24 hours also helps reduce swelling and muscular stiffness. Replace the heat packs when they get cold.

Do not use a straw, forcefully spit or forcefully rinse your mouth for the first 48 hours.

Take your medication as directed. Medicate yourself to stay ahead of the pain. Take the first pain pill before the numbness wears off. Try to take different pills at different times to avoid nausea. Taking them at different times helps determine which pill causes nausea, etc. Notify the staff or your pharmacist if any prescription related problems occur. Most pain medications can cause drowsiness. Do not drive, operate machinery or ride a bicycle while taking pain medications. Antibiotics may decrease the effectiveness of birth control medication. Additional methods of birth control should be used while on antibiotics.

Eat a soft diet for 48 hours. Avoid chewing on the surgical site.