Post-Operative Instructions

Routine Post-operative Instructions:

  • Leave gauze in place for up to 60 minutes, then remove. Replace with a moistened piece of gauze over the wound.
  • Take medications as directed.
  • Eat cold, soft foods after surgery.
  • Apply an ice bag (30 minutes on / 30 minutes off) for 24 hours.
  • Do not smoke for 5 to 7 days after surgery.

Bleeding: Some bleeding is expected. Keep head elevated at all times the day of surgery. Maintain gauze over the wound usually 1 to 2 hours. Remove the gauze to take medications, eat or drink, and sleep. A small amount of bleeding is normal. If excessive, bite down firmly on gauze that is placed directly over the wound. Keep mouth closed for 30 minutes. Should this fail, use a warm moist tea bag in place of the gauze. If bleeding does not stop, please call our office.

Pain: Take prescriptions as directed. Your pain will be greatest 3 days after surgery.

Ice Pack: To minimize swelling, apply an ice pack on the lower jaw, both left and right side, 30 minutes, 30 minutes off. This should be done for the first 24 hours after surgery.

Swelling/ Stiffness: This will be greatest 3 days after surgery. It will last for another 3 to 4 days. Two days after surgery start using a warm moist wash cloth to the face 3 to 4 times per day to reduce swelling.

Smoking: Smoking is strongly discouraged as it delays healing and increase pain after surgery.

Mouth Rinse: Do not use mouth rinse the day of surgery. Start using warm salt water rinses the day following surgery. (ΒΌ teaspoon of salt to 8 oz of water). Rinse 3 to 4 times per day. You may start brushing and flossing the day of surgery. Cleanliness of the mouth is essential to good healing and the prevention of infection.

Food: We recommend a soft diet for 3 to 5 days. Examples are: Eggs, jello, yogurt, pudding, milkshakes, and mashed potatoes. Keep hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids.

Nausea: Most cases are caused by swallowing blood or medications. Should nausea develop, eat sparingly, and take smalls sips of carbonated drinks. If nausea persists please call our office.

Discoloration: Bruising may develop. The application of heat will aid in the dissipation. This is not uncommon.

Stitches: If stitches were placed they will dissolve and fall out. This usually happens between 5 to 10 days.

Our interest in your case does not cease with the completion of the operation. If any difficulty arises post operatively, please call our office.