Post-operative Instructions

These instructions apply to the surgical procedure just completed. They are designed to help you minimize  discomfort and inform you of any situation that may require special attention.

Pain Medications

It is not unusual to have discomfort for at least the first week following your procedure. You will be given a prescription for medication to help you tolerate the recovery period. Please take your medications as directed. If necessary, you may take your pain medication more frequently than every 4-6 hours to stay ahead of the soreness. It is advisable to not take pain medication on an empty stomach, as nausea may result.

As an alternative to prescription medications, some patients have found taking a combination of over-the-counter Ibuprofen and Tylenol to be effective. You may take the combination in either of the following dosages: 3 Advil Liqui-Gels and 2 Regular Strength Tylenol or 3 Advil Liqui-Gels and 1 Extra Strength Tylenol, every 4-6 hours as needed.

Note: When taking any prescribed medication containing Acetaminophen (Tylenol), i.e.; Percocet, Hydrocodone, Vicoden or Tylenol with Codeine, you should not take additional Tylenol so as not to exceed the safety level of Acetaminophen. Please contact the office with any questions you may have.

Antibiotics

Please alert the office to any allergies or sensitivities that you might have to antibiotics. An antibiotic may be prescribed following your procedure. Take as directed until gone. It is advisable not to take these medications on an empty stomach, as nausea may result. For women taking birth control pills, be advised that antibiotics may interfere with their effectiveness.

Swelling

If Dr. LaSalle or her assistant informs you to use ice, when you arrive home use an icepack on your face next to the surgical site.  Leave it in place for ten minutes then remove it for ten minutes.  Repeat this routine for the first 24 hours.  (DO NOT use the icepack more than 24 hours following surgery.)  If you have swelling afte the first 24 hours, you may use moist heat on your face.  A towel run under hot water will work for moist heat. 

Bleeding

A small amount of bleeding is normal and will appear greatly exaggerated when blood is dissolved in saliva. If excessive or continuous bleeding occurs:

  • Place a moistened tea bag on the site and apply pressure for 20 minutes, do this twice if necessary.
  • Call the office if bleeding persists.

Dressing

The dressing (which acts as a bandage) is used to protect the surgical site and help reduce discomfort.  It may fall off before you return or it may stay intact. either instance is normal.

Diet

Until comfortable, avoid chewing on the side where the procedure was completed. Avoid hot foods and liquids for approximately 1 hour following the surgery so as not to soften the dressing. A soft diet is recommended. Foods such as cottage cheese, oatmeal, soup, eggs, yogurt, pasta, mashed potatoes, casseroles, and fruits are more easily eaten. Remember, adequate nutrition is essential for healing as well as for feeling better.

Smoking

Ideally, we would like you to not start smoking, again,  after surgery, for your overall health.  At a bare minimum, please, do not smoke for at least 2 weeks following your surgical procedure. It will significantly slow healing and compromise results.

Alcohol

Do not drink alcohol while taking prescription pain medications.

Rinsing

Use only the Chlorhexidine Glutonate (Peridex).  This will be your only mouth rinse.  NO vigorous rinsing or frequent rinsing.  Apply as instructed.

Brushing

Do not brush the site. You may resume normal brushing/flossing in other areas the following day.

Do not be alarmed if one of the following occurs:

  • Light bleeding
  • Slight swelling
  • Some soreness, tenderness or tooth sensitivity
  • Medicinal taste from Chlorhexidine Gluconate (Peridex).

Suture Removal

You may notice increased discomfort 3-4 days after the surgical procedure. As the tissues begin to heal, they may pull against the sutures and dressing. You may choose to take some form of pain medication one hour prior to your suture removal appointment to minimize tenderness. If you are a patient for whom Antibiotic Pre-Medication is required, take the prescribed antibiotics 1 hour prior to your suture removal appointment.

Contact Us

Please call the office, so that we may render further treatment, if any of the following occurs:

  • Prolonged or Severe Pain
  • Prolonged or Excessive Bleeding
  • Considerably elevated or persistent temperature

Dr. LaSalle