After Care Following Extraction
Healing following surgery usually occurs within one to two weeks without complications.
Occasionally problems arise because the mouth:
- Cannot be rested whilst healing occurs
- Cannot be sterilized and therefore the risk of wound infection is possible.
To minimize PAIN and SWELLING and to ensure an uneventful recovery please follow this advice.
Avoid disturbing the surgical area for 4 hours. Relax at home for the remainder of the day. If lying down prop your head up with a couple of pillows. Avoid heavy physical exertion for 48 hours.
Minor swelling is normal after surgery. It may increase for up to three days and may be accompanied by bruising. Ice packs should be applied to the face over the surgical area for 20 minutes during the first hour. Your dentist may recommend application of ice packs for a longer period if required.
Avoid vigorous mouth rinsing the day of surgery. After 24 hours commence mouth washing with Savacol diluted 1:1 with warm water or warm salty water (1 teaspoon of salt added to a glass of warm water). Rinse gently four times per day, especially after eating and continue for the next week. Hold the solution in the mouth for one to two minutes before discarding. Clean teeth as normal, but avoid surgical areas.
A certain amount of bleeding is to be expected, especially as the local anaesthetic wears off. A moderate amount of blood-stained saliva is normal during the first 48 hours. If heavy bleeding commences, apply pressure to the area by biting on a pack of gauze or clean cloth for 30 minutes. Repeat this procedure if bleeding persists. Should bleeding continue call your dentist for advice.
You may have a very soft or liquid meal that same day or evening. Next day eat soft nutritious foods such as eggs, pasta, custards, soup or fruit juices. Chew on the other side of your mouth and return to a normal diet as tolerated. Drink 3 litres of fluid a day.
Generally over-the-counter analgesics such as Panadol and/or ibuprofen are adequate and should be taken regularly for 24 hours following extraction. Your dentist will advise you of which pain relief will be most suitable for you.
Should be taken when prescribed and the whole course should be completed. Women taking oral contraceptives should be aware that the contraceptive effect could be diminished. Mild stomach upsets are common but if you experience a rash or other more severe side effects, stop taking the antibiotics and contact your dentist or GP.
8. Other complications
Bad breath and taste, earache, temporal headache and referred pain in other teeth can occur. Discomfort of lips can be alleviated by the use of Vaseline.