Post Operative Dental Care

Post Operative Dental Care after Oral or Maxillofacial Surgeries

What you should do following extractions and other oral surgery procedures (Post Operative Dental Care after Oral or Maxillofacial Surgeries)?


Some oozing of blood is expected following any surgical procedure. If bleeding is present, bite firmly on a gauze pad or a moistened tea bag placed directly over the surgical site for 30 minutes. Repeat as necessary. If bleeding continues avoid spitting, laying flat, physical activity, smoking, hot liquids, or sucking through a straw, all of which will increase bleeding.


Rest following any surgery. By sitting up or elevating your head on 2-3 pillows when lying down, you will have less oozing and swelling. Avoid physical activites if the bleeding is present. Avoid driving or operating hazardous equipment the day of the surgery if a general anesthetic has been administered.


Take pain killers for the pain medication as prescribed for you as directed before the numbness wears off (within 2-6 hours). In general, after oral surgery you should be feeling better by the third day. If you are not feeling better or pain is worsening, please notify us.


You can have liquids immediately after your surgery (i.e. juice or ice cream). Once the numbness starts to wear off, you can start having soft diet such as soup, mashed potatoes, ice cream, jello, pudding & etc. Advance your diet as tolerated the next day. Avoid rough foods and popcorn for several weeks.


An adequate oral intake will help prevent nausea and dehydration. Nausea can generally be prevented by taking tea with toast, broth with crackers, etc. Also do not use your medications on an empty stomach. If vomiting persists the day after surgery please notify us.


Maximum swelling normally occurs within 72 hours after surgery. Use ice packs during the first 48 hours after the surgery to reduce swelling. Use warm moist towels or a heating pad to help resolve the swelling after the first 48 hours has passed. The swelling and bruising may occur and persist for 5-7 days.

Ice: Place an ice bag firmly to your cheek, 1/2 hour on, 1/2 hour off, for the first 24-48 hours.

Heat: Apply moist, warm compresses over swollen area or a heating pad low setting.


Light colored sutures may become loose and dissolve within 2-7 days. Black sutures do not dissolve and must be removed.


Brush all of your teeth, exept the surgical area the night of the surgery. The next day brush all of your teeth, brushing gently over the surgical area. Gently rinse your mouth with warm salt water three times per day especially after meals. This will help the surgical site to heal faster.


Numbness of the lip or tongue on the operated side may persist for up to 24 hours. The use of antibiotics may decrease the effectiveness of oral birth control pills and the uses of alternative birth control methods are recommended. Avoid smoking and alcoholic beverages for at least 72 hours. Call our office if you have any questions or problems. Our doctors can be reached in case of emergency.