If you're scheduled for oral surgery, there's good news: with the advancements in dental technology and various forms of anesthesia, oral surgery is often fairly painless for the patient these days. However, this means that the difficult part of the process doesn't happen in the dentist's office – it happens at home, after the anesthesia wears off, while you're recovering from your procedure. Take a look at some oral surgery tips that will help make your oral surgery recovery as painless and uncomplicated as possible.
It's important to discuss medications with your doctor before you leave the dentist's office. In many cases, your dentist will prescribe an antibiotic for you to take following oral surgery. It's important to make sure that you fill this prescription and take it as prescribed. The purpose of the antibiotic is to ward off potential infections that could cause pain and complicate your recovery.
Don't forget to talk about pain management medications as well. Your doctor may prescribe prescription painkillers for you to take in the days immediately following your oral surgery. However, if prescription painkillers are contraindicated or not necessary for you, you need to know which over-the-counter pain medications you're allowed to take. In many cases, you should not take aspirin following dental surgery because it can thin blood and promote bleeding from the surgical site.
Brushing your teeth should be a daily habit, but you may have to avoid brushing the surgical site for a while following your oral surgery. While you certainly do want to keep the site clean, brushing could break stitches or dislodge blood clots from the surgical site, causing bleeding and requiring more treatment.
Ask your dentist what you should do to keep your mouth clean while it's healing. They may recommend rinsing your mouth with salt water or a special rinse in order to keep the surgical site clean without disturbing it. Find out when you should expect to be able to brush normally again.
Before your oral surgery, make sure that you stock up on soft foods. You may not feel much like going to the grocery store right after your surgery, so prepare ahead of time.
You may want to stick with clear liquids like broth for the first day, but then you should be able to move on to foods like yogurt, pudding, jello, mashed potatoes, oatmeal, and applesauce. Gradually work your way back to a normal diet as your mouth heals, and avoid hard or sticky foods, or foods that can leave particles in your mouth that might aggravate the surgical site until your mouth has fully healed.
It's important to know what is and isn't normal following oral surgery. If you're experiencing extreme pain, bleeding, or other symptoms that don't seem normal, make sure that you call your dentist right away and discuss full mouth rehabilitation.