Surgical Instructions

Surgical Instructions

Oral and maxillofacial surgery includes procedures like dental implant placement, wisdom tooth removal, and bone grafting. Each of these procedures has different surgical instructions.

Here are the major instructions to follow after oral and maxillofacial surgeries:

Extractions

Your impacted wisdom teeth may need to be surgically removed. An impacted tooth is trapped underneath the gums or in the jawbone and causes severe pain, swelling, and infection. Dental extractions are also recommended if there is a severely damaged or decayed tooth that can't be saved. 

Surgical instructions

  • Do not eat or drink anything for at least 8 hours before your surgery.
  • Avoid smoking for at least 24 hours prior to your surgery.
  • Have a friend or loved one give you a ride to and from the office.
  • Plan no strenuous activities and try to rest for the remainder of the day.

Jaw Surgery

Jaw surgery is performed to correct your bite and align the jaw. Your bite refers to the way that your teeth come together when you close your mouth. When your bite is not aligned, it can cause problems with speech, chewing, and the way that your teeth look. Orthognathic surgery involves repositioning the teeth as well as the jawbone.

Surgical instructions

  • To allow for healing and to ensure the best surgical outcome, please follow the following instructions:
  • No food or drink after midnight on the day of surgery.
  • No smoking for at least one week before surgery.
  • For the first few days after the procedure, you will want to be extra diligent about brushing your teeth. 
  • Eat a soft, cool, and easy-to-eat food diet.

What to do in the first few days after the surgery:

  • Stay home and rest
  • Brush your teeth with a soft toothbrush
  • Rinse your mouth with salt water
  • Take any medications that were prescribed by the doctor
  • Eat soft foods and make sure you drink plenty of liquids
  • Avoid chewing on the side of your mouth where the procedure was performed 
  • Apply ice packs to the cheek for 15 minutes on and then 15 minutes off for the first 24 hours following the surgery

Dental Implants

An implant is a titanium post that replaces the root of a missing tooth. It is surgically placed into the jawbone. The implant will fully fuse with your jawbone in a process called osseointegration. After the implant has healed, the dentist can put a dental crown, bridge, or denture on top of the implant.

Surgical instructions

  • Use an ice pack for 15 minutes to reduce the swelling around your mouth. The ice pack should be placed on the cheek where the dental implant was placed.
  • If your surgery site was covered with a gauze pad, leave it in place for 30 minutes after you return home. Once the 30 minutes have passed, remove the gauze pad. If bleeding persists, place another gauze pad over the site and apply light pressure for 10 minutes. 
  • Do not disturb the wound while it heals. It is best to use a soft-bristled toothbrush and rinse with salt water. Do not use sucking motions on the wound, and do not touch the sutures with your tongue.
  • It is important to keep the wound clean and dry, so you should avoid smoking, drinking through a straw, and using tobacco products.
  • After your dental implant procedure, you will be instructed to brush and floss your teeth to keep your mouth clean. The dentist will usually prescribe an antibacterial mouthwash, which should be used twice a day. In addition, you should brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day.
  • Use over-the-counter pain medication as needed.
  • Take antibiotics as prescribed to help minimize the risk of infection.
  • Sleep with the head elevated, as instructed.
  • Avoid strenuous activities, as instructed.

Schedule an appointment today at J. Russell Danner, DDS in Oklahoma City by calling 405-749-1676.