After Exposure of an Impacted Tooth
Some bleeding or redness in the saliva is normal for one to two days after surgery. Excessive bleeding, which causes your mouth to fill rapidly with blood, can usually be controlled by biting with pressure on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30-minute intervals. Do not frequently change the gauze to new as it can dislodge a developing clot. A moistened tea bag can be substituted for gauze. Do not apply ice to the area if bleeding is a concern. If bleeding continues, please call for instructions.
Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery, especially during the first 24 hours. To minimize swelling, apply ice packs as soon after surgery as you can. After 24 hours, ice has no beneficial effect.
Place the ice pack on the cheek in the area of surgery for 20 minutes, then remove it for 20 minutes. Continue the 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off interval as much as possible for the first 24 hours. Do not keep the ice packs on continuously, and be careful not to nap with the ice left in place.
If you do not have an ice pack, use a zip-lock bag filled with ice and covered with a towel, a towel filled with ice, or a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a towel.
On the day of surgery, drink plenty of fluids and eat soft food. Do not use straws because the sucking motion can cause more bleeding by dislodging the blood clot. Until the local anesthesia has worn off, avoid hot liquids or food.
Eat a bland diet and eat prior to taking medications to avoid nausea and vomiting.
The next day, you may eat anything soft by chewing away from the surgical sites. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids and eat regularly to help maintain your strength. Avoid nuts, seeds, popcorn and chips for two weeks after surgery.
For moderate pain, use over-the-counter pain relievers like Tylenol or ibuprofen.
For severe pain, take the prescribed medications as directed. The prescribed pain medicine can make you groggy and will slow down your reflexes. Do not drive an automobile or work around machinery.
Avoid alcoholic beverages. Pain or discomfort following surgery should subside over time. If pain persists, call the office.
A clean wound heals better and faster. The day after surgery, brush your teeth as best you can, being careful around the surgical site. Rinse your mouth with warm saltwater (1/2 teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) after all meals. Continue the rinse until healing is complete.
If you have been placed on antibiotics, take as directed. Antibiotics are prescribed for a purpose and should be completed. Call the office if you have an adverse reaction. It is important to discern side-effects versus true allergies.
Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. If you are considering exercise, throbbing or bleeding may occur. If it does, stop exercising. Also, keep in mind that you may not be consuming your usual nourishment, and this can weaken you. If you get lightheaded, stop exercising.