Do not disturb the wound. Avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery. Be as gentle as you can around the bone grafting area. Try to maintain all graft material at the surgical site.
Some bleeding or redness in the saliva is normal for 24 hours. Excessive bleeding (your mouth fills up rapidly with blood) can be controlled by biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. Change the gauze pad every 30 minutes as needed. If excessive bleeding continues, please call for further instructions. In general, use as little pressure as is needed.
Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling, apply an ice-filled bag wrapped in a towel on the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the ice continuously as much as possible for the first 48 hours. Swelling generally reaches a peak in 48 hours and then subsides over the next 3–5 days. If swelling begins to increase after the third post-operative day, please call us immediately.
Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid hot liquids or hot food because the hot temperature may increase bleeding. Soft foods and liquids should be eaten postoperatively on the day of surgery. Try to keep solid food away from the surgical site.
You should begin taking pain medication prior to the local anesthetic wearing off. For moderate pain, ibuprofen (Advil® or Motrin®) may be taken. Ibuprofen bought over the counter comes in 200 mg tablets: 2–3 tablets may be taken every 4–6 hours as needed for pain (no more than 3200 mg/24-hour period). For severe pain, the prescribed medication should be taken as directed and can be taken in combination with the ibuprofen. Do not take any of the above medication if you are allergic or have been instructed by your doctor not to take it. This may include patients with liver or kidney disease.
Be sure to take the prescribed antibiotics as directed until completion to help prevent infection.
Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing. Warm water rinses should be used after meals. If you are given a prescription for Peridex™ oral rinse, gently rinse for 30 seconds and expectorate twice a day. You may gently brush the tooth surfaces of the adjacent teeth as long as the bristles don’t disturb the graft site. You may floss normally starting the day of surgery, if comfortable.
Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. If you are exercising, throbbing or bleeding may occur. If this occurs, you should discontinue exercising. Keep in mind that you are probably not taking normal nourishment. This may weaken you and further limit your ability to exercise.
Wearing Your Prosthesis
In some cases, partial dentures, flippers, or full dentures may be used immediately after surgery if your doctor has evaluated them after your surgery. In general, the prosthesis should not touch the grafted site.