After oral surgery, it is important to follow your dentist’s instructions, to ensure proper healing and to avoid complications. As a rule of thumb, you should always wait two hours after surgery before eating, to let the anesthesia wear off. Eating while your mouth is still numb could cause you to accidentally bite your tongue, cheeks, or lips and caused soft tissue damage. Guidelines for specific procedures are listed below. Please read through them. They provide essential information that will help ensure you make a full and healthy recovery.
Expect soreness for a few days after a root canal. You should avoid chewing on the side of your mouth where the procedure was performed, to avoid irritating it and to help the restorative material set properly. You will also receive an antibiotic prescription, in case there is a remaining infection in your tooth. If you notice an increasing amount of pain or tenderness, which may be a reaction to the medication, or the loss of the temporary filling, call Dr. Seini immediately.
Crowns and Bridges
Before you receive your permanent crown or bridge, you will first receive a temporary one. This is not as sturdy as the permanent version, so you need be careful when eating, flossing, and brushing. Avoid sticky or chewy foods. Brush the area gently and do not pull up on the tooth when flossing because you could dislodge it.
There may be some sensitivity and irritation after the temporary or permanent crown or bridge is placed. This is normal and will subside after the soft tissue heals. A warm salt water rinse will help and you can also take Advil or Tylenol to help relieve the pain.
When the permanent crown or bridge is placed, it may feel awkward, but this will fade after a few days and your new tooth will feel like one of your natural ones. If your bite feels abnormal in any way, contact Dr. Seini. To care for your bridge or crown, all you need to do is brush and floss regularly.
White Fillings (Bonding)
After the anesthesia wears off, your teeth will be sensitive. You should avoid hot and cold food or drinks for the next few days. Afterwards, your teeth will feel good as new. To maintain your filling, continue to brush and floss as usual.
Scaling and Root Planing
After this procedure, your gums will be slightly sore and irritated for a few days. To relieve the pain, keep the area clean, rinse your mouth with warm salt water (1 tsp salt/8 oz water) 2-3 times a day. Continue brushing and flossing after the procedure, but brush gently, so that you do not irritate the area. If you experience any swelling or stiffness, you can use a cold compress and take some pain medicine. Avoid any hard or chewy foods for 2-3 days after the surgery, to make sure the area heals correctly. If you continue to experience pain or swelling after a few days, contact Dr. Seini.
Before you receive your permanent veneers, you will receive a set of temporary veneers. These are not as sturdy as the permanent version, so be careful when brushing, flossing, and eating. Brush the area gently and do not pull up on the tooth when flossing because it could become dislodged. When eating, avoid sticky or chewy foods.
You may experience some sensitivity and irritation after the temporary or permanent veneers are placed. This is normal and will subside as the soft tissue heals. A warm salt water rinse will help. If the pain does not go away, you can also take some Advil or Tylenol.
When the veneers are placed, they may feel a little awkward for the first few days, but your mouth will adjust to them and eventually they will feel like your natural teeth. If your bite feels abnormal in any way, contact Dr. Seini. When brushing and flossing, pay close attention to the area between the veneer and the gum line.
After a tooth extraction, you will need to rest. Because the operation requires general anesthesia, you will not be able to drive yourself home, so bring a friend or family member with you to the appointment. Your gums may bleed a little immediately after the surgery, but don’t worry. This is normal. Gauze will be applied at the completion of the surgery, and you will need to change it periodically whenever it becomes too soiled. If bleeding continues for longer than 24 hours, call Dr. Seini. Rest when you return home, but do not lie flat, as this can prolong the bleeding. Prop your head up on a pillow when lying down. Dr. Seini will prescribe pain medication to help relieve the pain. You can also use an ice pack. Dr. Seini may also provide you with a solution to clean the extraction site if you require it.
You will be limited to soft foods for a few days after surgery. Focus on foods you can eat without chewing. Dr. Seini recommends:
- Mashed Potatoes
- Ice Cream
- Thin Soups
When drinking, do not use a straw. The suction can loosen your sutures and slow the clotting process. The same goes for smoking. If you have prolonged pain, bleeding, irritation, or don’t feel that the extraction site is healing properly, call Dr. Seini for a follow up.
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