Self Care after Surgery

Saline Rinses:

  • 1/2 tsp salt to 1 cup warm water. Start rinsing after 24 hours and brushing your teeth with toothpaste. 


  • No smoking, heavy spitting or straws for the first 24 hours. 
  • Syringe the sockets with warm saline after 24 hours to keep clean. Ask our office if you need a plastic syringe.


  • Bite firmly on gauze until the freezing starts to disappear, and then remove it gently. Replace with new damp gauze if needed. 
  • If bleeding begins again, place a damp tea bag directly over the surgery area and bit firmly until the bleeding stops. 
  • Some blood may ooze from the surgery area for 24-48 hours, which is normal. If bleeding continues, contact the office. 


  • Discomfort (pain, headaches, throbbing) is normal after surgery but can be controlled by medication prescribed by the dentist. 
  • Follow the prescription as advised by your dentist and the directions written on the container. If the medication is not strong enough please contact the office. 


  • It is important to drink plenty of fluids (avoid alcohol) and eat regular meals as soon as possible after surgery. Soft food such as pudding, yogurt, ice cream, mashed potatoes and scrambled eggs may be the most comfortable to start with. If you have trouble eating drinking a nutritional drink such as Boost or Ensure and available at your local drug store. 

Oral Hygiene

  • DO NOT RINSE WITH ANY TYPE OF LIQUID for 24 hours after surgery as it may interfere with the blood clot formation, which is vital to the healing process. 
  • Continue to brush your teeth but avoid the area of surgery. After brushing simply let the water to fall from your mouth. A child toothbrush may be used if you cannot open wide. Toothpaste is fine. 
  • DO NOT SMOKE for 7 days because it promotes infection, bleeding and interferes with healing. 
  • DO NOT SPIT or suck through a straw, since this promotes bleeding.


  • There may be residual numbness after surgery which should disappear within a few weeks and generally is not permanent.


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