After the Removal of Multiple Teeth
PREPARING FOR SURGERY:
If relevant, take time off from work after your surgery to recover fully before returning to your daily occupation. Let your employer know that you might be away for about one week. If you feel you are making good progress, you might choose to return to light duties. Returning to work too soon might delay your recovery. Cancel social engagements, fitness classes, and sporting events to concentrate on your recovery.
Have a fluid diet for the first 36 hours (clear soup, juice, Jell-O). After the first 36 hours, you may start soft foods like puree soups, ice cream, congee, milk shakes, Ensure or Boost, yogurt, dessert or soft tofu, mashed potatoes, soft scrambled eggs, and pudding. Avoid nuts, seeds, acidic foods, and sharp foods (corn chips) for at least one week. Drink plenty of fluids.
DENTURE CARE AND ORAL HYGIENE:
Do not rinse your mouth for the first post-operative day, or while there is bleeding. After the first day, use a warm salt-water rinse every four hours and following meals to flush out particles of food and debris that may lodge in the surgical area (One teaspoon of salt in a glass of lukewarm water.).
If immediate dentures have been inserted, sore spots may develop. In most cases, your dentist will see you within 24-48 hours after surgery and make the necessary adjustments to relieve those sore spots. Failure to do so may result in severe denture sores, which may prolong the healing process.
Keep the denture in your mouth for the first day. The denture helps to prevent bleeding. If you have an appointment the day after surgery with your general dentist, allow them to remove the denture for inspection. If you do not have an appointment, take the denture out the morning after surgery and clean it with warm salt water. Replace the denture once you have rinsed your mouth gently with Peridex. At night, take the denture out and soak it in salt-water overnight. If you have some teeth remaining, brush them gently before the Peridex rinse to avoid staining. If you were given Oxyfresh, place it inside the denture in the morning after cleaning it and directly inside the mouth at the site of tooth extraction at bedtime.
Bleeding after surgery occasionally happens and is usually not troublesome. When blood mixes with saliva, it can appear far worse than it is. If bleeding occurs, place a gauze pad directly over the bleeding socket and apply biting pressure for 60 minutes. Whenever bleeding occurs, avoid hot liquids, don’t exercise, and elevate the head. Do not remove immediate dentures unless the bleeding is severe. Expect some oozing around the side of the denture. If you have constant oozing of blood from the wounds, call Dr. Gumplinger’s office or the after hours number.
Bruising typically affects the cheeks, but may even extend to the neck or chest. This is not unusual and should not unduly concern you. It may take several weeks for the bruising to completely fade. If you had IV sedation, you may also have a small bruise on your arm or hand.
The jaw sometimes stiffens after surgery, so you may not feel it is possible to open as wide as before surgery. This will gradually return to normal, but may take several weeks.
Some extractions from the lower jaw can cause bruising of the nerve witch manifests as “pins and needles” or “numbness” in the lip, chin or tongue. In most instances this gradually returns to normal after several weeks, but in rare occasions, it can be permanent.
You may be given a prescription of antibiotics to prevent infection. Smoking delays and impairs the body’s ability to heal. Do not smoke for 2 weeks following surgery. Regular rinsing with Peridex for the first 5 days will help to prevent infection. Salt-water can be used several times a day in addition to the Peridex rinsing. You maybe given oxyfresh gel to use during your post-operative period. Use the gel twice a day the day after your procedure. After rinsing with Peridex, place a pen sized amount of gel on your clean fingertip and gently place at the surgical site. Do not rinse or spit; leave it in place. Repeat morning and night. You will note that our instructions differ from those on the Oxyfresh package; this is intentional. Oxyfresh brings stabilized oxygen to the surgical site and helps to speed the healing process.
Severe pain is usually not experienced, but some pain and discomfort is to be expected after surgery. The pain is usually the worst in the first 24 hours. For mild to moderate discomfort use Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) 200mg two tablets every four hours. Extra strength Tylenol can also be taken every four hours.
For more severe pain, use the prescription given to you. If the pain does not begin to subside in two to three days, or increases after two days, please call the office.
Various degrees of swelling may occur following surgery. You may have been prescribed an anti-swelling drug to take post operatively. Apply an ice pack (frozen gel packs of frozen peas or corn work well) to the affected side of your face for a maximum of 10 min on then 10 min off. Place a cloth or tea towel between your face and the ice pack. Use the ice pack during the first 36 hours after surgery. If your swelling does not start to diminish after several days, call our office for further advice at #604.439.7874.