1. Keep gauze in place for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues or recurs, wet and place a new gauze pack on site of bleeding and bite down firmly for 20-30 minutes. If you lie down after your surgery, use several pillows to keep your head elevated. This will minimize possible bleeding in the early hours after your procedure. NOTE: Some slight bleeding or oozing is normal for up to 24 hours after tour procedure. This will not require additional gauze packing.
2. NO SMOKING FOR 72 HOURS! If you smoke before 72 hours, your chances of healing complications increase dramatically.
3. Do not spit, rinse, suck on straws, or sneeze with your mouth closed today. All of these actions may dislodge the blood clot and delay healing. Tomorrow, begin rinsing after meals and before going to bed. Use warm salt water (1/2 teaspoon of table salt in an 8oz glass of warm water) or a diluted commercial mouth rinse until the area is completely healed.
4. Please do not brush the surgical area for 24 hours. Only light brushing is required of the healing site after 24 hours. Return to your routine of brushing and flossing the rest of your mouth as soon as possible.
5. Try to refrain from eating spicy, hard, or chewy foods. Foods like grains, popcorns, or rice can become lodged in the wound and delay healing. Do not consume alcoholic beverages while taking any pain medication.
6. Most pain medications will upset your stomach. If possible, avoid taking pain medicine on an empty stomach – it is less likely to happen if you have food in your stomach. If an oral rinse or additional antibiotics have been prescribed, please follow the prescription instructions.
7. Your jaw may be stiff for several days after surgery. Use of your jaw and jaw stretching exercises will help loosen the muscles. You should be able to open normally within 48-72 hours after surgery. No vigorous exercise for at least 24-48 hours, as this may increase bleeding and delay healing.
8. To minimize swelling, you can place a cold compress or ice bag against your cheek. 30 minutes on and 30 minutes off. After 48 hours you may begin placing warm compresses on your cheek. Some swelling, moderate bleeding, or discoloration is not unusual. Report anything more severe to us immediately. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to call.
9. Do no play with the sutures that have been placed. Please call if sutures have come apart. In some instances, this is ok and no additional procedures are necessary. In some instances, new sutures will need to be placed. Sutures will be removed at the following appointment.
Proper home care and behavior following surgical procedures will maximize recovery and prevent complications.
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