Post-Op Instructions

  • Oral Surgery Post-Op
  • Root Canal Post-Op
  • Scalding & Root Planing Post-Op
Oral Surgery Post-Op

Oral Surgery Post-Op Instructions

Dental Implants 

Swelling: In some cases, puffiness and swelling may result and should not

cause alarm. This may be kept at a minimum by holding an ice bag on the outside of the face, adjacent to the surgical to area for the first 6-8 hours after your visit. Leave it on for 15 minutes, then off for 15 minutes.

Bleeding: It is normal for saliva to be slightly streaked with blood. In order to

stop bleeding, place a moist piece of gauze or cold wet squeezed tea bag over the surgical site and bit down for 20 minutes. Repeat if necessary. Keep fingers and tongue away from surgical site.

Rinses: Do not rinse mouth until the following day. On the morning

following surgery, rinse mouth thoroughly with Peridex, Listerine, or warm salt water (1/2 teaspoon salt + 6 oz. warm water). Repeat this after each meal or the first two weeks.

Denture: Dentures should not be worn until the denture has been relined or

adjusted. Insertion of dentures too early may jeopardize a successful healing process .

Nutrition: Maintaining an adequate diet after surgery is important. You can chew on the opposite side of your mouth, and should avoid extremely hard and spicy foods. We have listed some foods that supply nourishment with little, if any, chewing necessary for swallowing.

– Broths

– Soups

– Ice Cream

– Chopped or ground meat

– Eggs

– Baby Foods

– Custards or pudding

– Malted milk or shakes

Sleeping: Keep your head elevated with two pillows while sleeping.

Medication: Following dental surgery, it is normal to experience some

discomfort. If medications have been prescribed, take as directed. Please note the following:

a. All medications may produce allergic reactions and/or side effects.

b. Narcotics will impede driving, using machinery and mental alertness.

c. Antibiotics may negate birth control medications. Use alternative methods.

Oral Surgery

Bleeding: Do not be concerned if traces of blood are noted in the salvia for several hours after the procedure. Do not rinse the mouth vigorously for the first few hours as the disruption of the clot may occur. It is best to avoid hot foods or fluid until the day following surgery. If continuous or excessive bleeding occurs, please contact the office.

Pain: You may have moderate discomfort after the anesthetic wears off. Most can be controlled with a mild analgesic. A prescription for a strong analgesic may be issued if necessary, and should be used as directed.

Swelling/Stiffness: In some cases, swelling is to be expected. It is normal and should not cause alarm. To help alleviate this, ice packs may be applied to the outside of the face over the area of surgery for ½ hour on and ½ hour off for the first 3-4 hours. Ice cubes in a plastic bag work nicely for an ice pack. If swelling discomfort persist, warm wet compresses may be used over the area on the second and subsequent days. These are to be applied for 20 minutes on and 40 minutes off for three hours each day.

Oral Hygiene: Meticulous oral hygiene should be continued in all other areas of the mouth but the area of surgery should be avoided to prevent the dislodging of the blood clot. Gentle rinsing after meals with warm salt water rinses, (½ tsp salt/ 8 oz. water). You should continue to brush your teeth and stimulate the tissue elsewhere in your mouth. Rinsing helps flush out the debris, which collects around that area.

Nutrition: Maintaining an adequate diet after surgery is important. You can chew on the opposite side of your mouth, and should avoid extremely hard and spicy foods. We have listed some foods that supply nourishment with little, if any, chewing necessary for swallowing.

– Broths

– Soups

– Ice Cream

– Chopped or ground meat

– Eggs

– Baby Foods

– Custards or pudding

– Malted milk or shakes


A.) Maintain an adequate home care level.

B.) Decrease or eliminate smoking as smoking significantly delays the healing of oral tissue.

C.) Utilize warm salt water rinses to remove debris. Tooth Sensitivity Tooth sensitivity following surgery is almost totally related to inadequate plaque removal. It is very important then to be very meticulous with your plaque control procedures.

DO NOT use a Water Pik in surgical areas for three weeks.

Remember that you just had minor surgery. Be kind to yourself.

Root Canal Post-Op

Root Canal Post-Op Instructions

Root canal therapy, often called Endodontic Treatment, takes two or more appointments to complete. A temporary filling or crown is placed to protect the tooth between appointments.

After each appointment when anesthetic has been used, your lips, teeth and tongue may be numb for several hours. Avoid any chewing until the numbness has completely worn off. Between appointments, it’s common (and not a problem) for a small portion of your temporary filling to wear away or break off. If the entire filling falls out, or if a temporary crown comes off, call our dental office so it can be replaced.

It’s normal to experience some discomfort for several days after a root canal appointment, especially when chewing. To control discomfort, take pain medication as recommended. If antibiotics are prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length of time, even if all symptoms and signs of infection are gone.

To further reduce pain and swelling, rinse three times a day with warm salt water; dissolve a teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water, then rinse-swish-spit.

To protect the tooth and help keep your temporary in place:

  • Avoid eating sticky foods (especially gum)
  • Avoid hard foods and hard substances, such as ice, fingernails and pencils.
  • If possible, chew only on the opposite side of your mouth.
  • It’s important to continue to brush and floss normally. Usually, the last step after root canal treatment is the placement of a permanent crown on the tooth. A crown covers and protects the tooth from breaking in the future.

If you have persistent or unusual pain, or you have any other questions or concerns, please call our office.

Caring for your temporary restoration

Your temporary is made to last for at least a few weeks. This allows us to evaluate any potential problems prior to your final restoration. 


The temporary must stay on:

Your temporary is held on with strong cement. Occasionally, it may loosen or come off before it should. If this happens, the tooth may move, become sensitive or cause inflammation. Any of these conditions may prevent timely placement of the final restoration. 

To prevent loosening:

Be careful with biting and chewing foods. Avoid hard, tough, crunchy and/or sticky foods. Floss carefully. Avoid pulling up or down on the temporary. After introducing the floss between the teeth, merely pull the floss out the side. 

What to do if it comes off:

Call us. We would like to recement it for you in a timely manner. If you cannot come in, replace the temporary with finger pressure or secure it with a small amount of denture adhesive such as Poli-Grip or Fixodent. 

The tissue around your temporary must be kept very clean and healthy:

Flossing and brushing are the most important things you can do to insure good tissue health. If you were prescribed PerioGard, it was to improve the tissue health and to facilitate the placement of the final restoration. Dip your brush in a small amount of the solution; massage it into the tissue around the tooth for 20 seconds, twice daily.

Normal Expectations:

  • Some tenderness
  • Some soreness, but only for a few days.
Scalding & Root Planing Post-Op

Scalding & Root Planing Post-Op Instructions

Periodontal disease has been shown to be responsible for approximately fifty percent of tooth loss. After deep scale and root planing:

  • If you smoke, DO NOT SMOKE for at least one hour. Consider quitting, as smoking aggravates periodontal disease.
  • Avoid spicy foods until your mouth tissues feel better, approximately 24 – 48 hours. This varies with each person.
  • Salt water rinses will ease soreness. Rinse as often as you like using one teaspoon of salt to one cup of warm water.
  • If you feel it is necessary, take extra-strength acetaminophen (Tylenol) pain relievers that are not aspirin types. Avoid aspirin until tissues have healed.
  • It is important to remember to brush and floss as usual, just be a bit more gentle until your mouth feels better. Leaving food debris on your teeth and gums will only invite more bacteria and soreness, so do your best to keep your mouth clean.

Areas that negatively affect the health of gums and supporting bone area:

  • Poor oral hygiene habits.
  • Plaque bacteria and accumulation of calculus (tartar), as well as faulty restorations, fillings, crowns, bridges and food impaction.
  • Nutrition specific deficiencies such as a lack of vitamin A, B complex, C, D, and the minerals calcium and phosphorus.
  • Adverse habits such as smoking, chewing tobacco, regular drinking of soda and other sugared drinks between meals, chewing gum or candy that has sugar as the base, eating baked goods that have small seeds which may get into pockets around teeth.

In cases of Advanced Periodontal Disease, when deemed necessary, you may be referred you to a Periodontist.

We are dedicated to keeping you informed and want you to know what you can expect during your first visit with us.