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- Bite down gently but firmly and constantly on a folded piece of gauze over the surgical site for 1 hour after
- If bleeding persists after 1 hour, place a new piece of folded gauze over the site for another 30 to 45 minutes
and repeat as needed. Do NOT change the gauze too frequently as this will pull off the clot and stimulate
- It is common to have some mild oozing or spotting for up to 24 to 48 hours.
- If bleeding still persists, bite more firmly on the gauze moistened with water or soaked in strong, regular
black tea (which contains tannic acid that helps with clotting) for an additional hour and make sure the gauze
is positioned directly over the surgical area.
- If bleeding does not decrease with pressure, please call the office immediately.
- Do not sleep or eat with gauze in your mouth
- Keep your head slightly elevated the first day while lying down (head above the heart)
- Do not disturb the surgical area for at least 48 hours. Aggressive rinsing, spitting, manipulation, or the use of
straws within 48 hours can disturb the clot, open the wound and prolong bleeding which will delay healing.
- Brush your other teeth the night of surgery, staying away from the surgical site(s) for 3 days.
- If bleeding is well controlled after 24 hours, begin rinsing gently with salt water (1/2 tsp of table salt in 8
ounces of warm water) and allow the water to drip into the sink. Rinse gently after all meals and after brushing
for 2 weeks.
- If you have been given a prescription mouthwash (Peridex®), start using it 24 hours after surgery but only
twice daily after brushing. Also brush your tongue as this rinse may temporarily cause brownish staining of
- If your surgeon placed a silver healing abutment over the dental implant, begin cleaning the abutment after
24 hours with a Q-tip moistened with tap water and with a small amount of toothpaste. It is important to
keep the abutment clean to allow proper healing of the surrounding gum tissue.
- Avoid using a WaterPik®, electric toothbrush, peroxide, or other OTC mouthwashes for 2 weeks.
- Be careful of eating and drinking until your local anesthesia has worn off as you may spill or accidentally bite
your lip or tongue.
- For the first 2 days, your diet should be softer, and avoid hot liquids or chewing on the implant or bone graft
- After 48 hours, it is usually safe to resume your normal diet but try to avoid chewing on the surgical site for
as long as possible.
Preventing Swelling & Bruising:
- Swelling and bruising are normal after oral surgery and may appear worse 2 to 3 days later. This may last
up to a week so it is important to prevent swelling as much as possible by icing and limiting your physical
activity for 48 hours. Ice early and often.
- Avoid bending, lifting, exercising or other strenuous activity for at least 4 days
- Apply ice packs to the cheek adjacent to the surgical site (30 minutes on and off, alternating) for 48 hours
switching to heat after 48 hours in the same location. Heat is more effective than ice after 48 hours.
- Bruising may be more noticeable 3 or more days later (and be more profound if you’re taking aspirin or other
blood thinners). It will slowly disappear but sometimes the use of warm compresses in the area will speed
- Take all of the antibiotic pills as directed until the prescription is done to prevent infection or bacterial
- If you are taking birth control pills, you should use a back-up birth control
- Some discomfort is to be expected after oral surgery with the majority of discomfort in the first 48 hours.
This should lessen each day.
- BEFORE the local anesthetic is expected to wear off, take an over-the-counter (non-Aspirin) pain reliever
such as Tylenol®, Motrin®, Advil®, or Aleve®.
- It is not necessary to fill or take the prescription pain medication unless the OTC pain relievers are not helping.
- If you have never taken prescription pain medication, start with a half a pill and take it with food.
- Do NOT drive, operate heavy machinery, drink alcohol or take other sedative medications while taking prescription
For Socket Bone Grafts:
- Bone grafts are made up of many sand-like particles/granules, some of which may come out during the first
- To minimize the amount of bone graft particles that may become dislodged:
- Do not rinse vigorously for 3 to 5 days but being to rinse gently after 2 days
- Do not touch the grafted area as the material is movable during initial healing
- Do not pull on your lip to examine the surgical site or probe the area with your tongue, or any objects or
your fingers. The stitches may loosen and incision may open which can jeopardize and delay the healing
of the implant.
Wearing Your Prostheses:
- If you wear a “flipper”, partial denture, or full denture, keep it out until the bleeding has stopped and your
local anesthesia has worn off.
- These prostheses should not touch the gum near the surgical site or the dental implant. If so, it can cause
the wound to open or put pressure on or move the implant which is trying to heal.
- If you have questions about the fit, do not wear it until we see you for your follow up or until your dentist
has adjusted it.
- Do NOT drive, operate heavy machinery, or make important decisions for 24 hours if you have had IV anesthesia.
- Do NOT smoke as it increases the risk of implant failure.
- Do NOT use a straw or drink carbonated liquids for a minimum of 3 days.
- Do NOT stretch your lip or cheek daily to examine the surgical site as this may lead to wound breakdown.
- Keep your lips and corners of your mouth moist with Vaseline® to prevent cracking.
- It may be difficult to chew and open your mouth due to tightness of the jaw muscles. This should disappear
within 7 days. A continued soft diet, warm compresses, and OTC pain relievers may be helpful.
- Your doctor will see you 1 to 2 weeks after your implant or bone graft procedure to check on your healing,
your hygiene, and possibly to remove sutures.
- Please call the office (508) 660-2900 with any questions