in a Calming Environment
At Hamburg Family Dental, we know the thought of oral surgery can be scary, even for our bravest patients. We also know we wouldn’t recommend it unless it was absolutely necessary and in the best interest of your oral and overall health. If you need any type of oral surgery, you can rest assured you’re in the most skilled and caring hands with Dr. Patel and our team. We take every measure to ensure your comfort and use only the most advanced techniques and technology to provide a faster, more comfortable treatment with quicker healing and healthy results.
Extractions & Wisdom Teeth
Nobody wants to have teeth extracted, but in many cases, it may be in your best interest. Don’t worry, extractions have come a long way in recent years with advancements in techniques and technology, and Dr. Patel performs them routinely with optimized patient comfort and quick healing.
Maybe you have an infected tooth or a failed root canal. Maybe you have a tooth that’s badly decayed and past the point of repair. Maybe you have untreated gum disease and your gums are no longer healthy enough to support the teeth. Maybe your teen has overcrowding or impacted wisdom teeth that may be problematic.
Whatever the reason, we can provide tooth extractions from the comfort of your dental home. We will use either a local or general anesthetic, depending on your case and individual preferences. Dr. Patel will give you specific post-op instructions to follow to ensure the fastest healing and best results.
We also offer a variety of other types of soft- and hard-tissue procedures to provide all your oral surgery needs from the comfort of your dental home.
Post-Op Home Care Instructions
At Hamburg Family Dental, we want your recovery to be as quick and painless as possible. If you’ve had a tooth extracted or any other type of oral surgery, read the instructions below to help minimize swelling and pain, and reduce your chance of infection and complications. Dr. Patel will be sure to give you specific post-op instructions to follow, but here are some general guidelines you can anticipate following oral surgery.
- If instructed by Dr. Patel, you should take ibuprofen every six hours continuously for the first two days to minimize pain and swelling. Take the first dose immediately following surgery before the local anesthetic has worn off. If you’ve been prescribed medication for pain, you can take ibuprofen in addition to your prescription. If a prescribed medication has not been given, you may alternate taking Tylenol and ibuprofen every six hours for the first two days.
- Bite down firmly on the gauze packs to make sure they remain in place. Do not change them within the first 30 minutes unless heavy bleeding warrants it. After 30 minutes, you can place a new gauze pack over the area. Gauze may then be changed as necessary (typically every 20-30 minutes or when too soaked with your saliva). It’s best to slightly moisten the gauze with tap water or your own spit for the most comfortable positioning. Do not forget to remove gauze when eating and sleeping. Bleeding may take up to 24 hours to subside.
- Do not rinse, smoke, or drink through a straw for at least 48 hours after surgery. If you’ve been prescribed an antibiotic mouthwash, you can begin to use it gently at bedtime the night following surgery. Remember to NOT swish like you would normally with mouthwash.
- Swelling is common after oral surgery, and can be minimized with a cold compress or ice pack applied to the cheek nearest the surgical site. Applying ice to your face for 5-10 minute intervals for the first few hours may limit swelling during the first 24 hours after surgery. Do not use ice after the first 24 hours.
- Mild bleeding is normal for the first 24 hours. If bleeding persists or becomes heavy, you can wrap a tea bag (soaked in hot water and squeezed damp-dry) with moist gauze and place it over the area for 30 minutes. Tea contains a beneficial agent that helps constrict blood vessels locally. You may see pink on your pillow tomorrow morning. You can use an old towel to protect your pillow overnight. If heavy bleeding persists after 24 hours, please call the office.
- Jaw pain and stiffness is common following oral surgery. You can gently stretch your mouth open with two fingers each hour to reduce stiffness and regain jaw mobility and function. You can also massage your cheek muscles following surgery to reduce stiffness.
- Drink only liquids (cool or lukewarm) after surgery until the numbness has worn off (without a straw). Then you may eat a soft food diet of things like spaghetti, mashed potatoes, smoothies, and soups. Avoid hard or crunchy foods like popcorn and nuts for a few weeks following surgery.
- Keeping your mouth clean after surgery is crucial. In addition to prescription mouthwash (if recommended), you should use ½ teaspoon of salt dissolved in an eight ounce glass of warm water and gently swish and spit over five minutes until you’ve used the entire glass. Repeat at least twice daily. Avoid generic mouthwash as the alcohol may irritate the wound. Avoid brushing the area for 10 days, but please do brush and the floss the rest of your teeth as normally as possible.
- Avoid disrupting the wound, smoking, and drinking through straws to minimize your risk of a dry socket. If you develop severe throbbing pain that is not responsive to pain medication and persistent bad breath one week following your surgery, you may have dry socket and should schedule a post-op appointment.
If bleeding, pain, and swelling don’t subside after 24-48 hours, you should give us a call and come see us right away and we can help.
Get in Touch
If you have any questions about oral surgery or you’re ready to schedule a consultation with your Lexington dentist, Dr. Alisha Patel at Hamburg Family Dental, give us a call today or request an appointment easily online. We look forward to smiling with you!