When you need oral surgery, it’s important to recover well and heal from the surgery. There are many things that you can do in order to have a better recovery period, and there are many things that you should avoid doing in order to have that effective healing time. There are many do’s and don’ts that patients need to be aware of before they have their surgery. If you have any questions, call us at DFW Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons to get the answers. Our team is highly knowledgeable and can help when there’s information you need.
The Do’s of Recovering from Oral Surgery
The most important thing that you can do after your surgery is to follow all of the doctor’s instructions. You will be given detailed instructions about what to do after the surgery so that you heal as well as possible. If there are any parts of the instructions that you don’t understand, don’t hesitate to ask questions. You can ask them before or after the surgery and call if you still have questions.
Take the medication that you need after your surgery. Your doctor will prescribe specific medications that you need to take, and it’s important to take them as directed. If you aren’t sure when to start them, ask the doctor before you leave. In most cases, the doctor will go over your medications before the surgery and may give you the prescriptions in advance so that you’re ready for the recovery period when you have your surgery.
Get plenty of rest. It’s important to rest for 24 hours or more after the surgery. You need this rest time for the healing process.
If you have any bleeding, use gauze to put pressure on the area. You will be given gauze pads after your surgery to use at home or in the car on the way there.
Have pillows ready to prop up your head after the surgery. You should arrange your bed before you leave for the procedure so that it’s ready for you to rest as soon as you get back in. An extra pillow or two should prop your head up enough for your healing. It’s also important to have clean sheets and a clean pillowcase to sleep on. This can help to prevent germs from getting to the affected areas.
Keep swelling down by putting ice packs on your face. These should generally be used for about 15 minutes at a time. Having an ice pack ready at home before your surgery will make this easier.
After your surgery, only eat foods that are soft or liquid. These may include things like milkshakes, applesauce, soup, yogurt, mashed potatoes, and smoothies. When you do go back to solid foods, try them slowly to make sure you’re ready to eat them.
Use warm, salty water to rinse your mouth the day after you have your surgery. Keep rinsing for a while before you spit out the water.
Call if you have any problems. If you have excessive bleeding or any other problem after your surgery, you should call the office to report the problem.
The Don’ts of Recovering from Oral Surgery
Once you have had your surgery, don’t exercise for the first 24 hours. You need to devote time to healing, and exercising right away can cut into that time and cause problems.
Don’t lift heavy objects or perform forceful head movements for a few days after your surgery. This can put your healing in jeopardy and result in a longer recovery period.
Don’t rinse out your mouth for the first few hours after your surgery. Your doctor will tell you when you should start with the salt water. This is often about 24 hours after surgery.
Don’t brush the area of the surgery for a few days. If the area gets dirty, you can use your gauze pads to wipe the area gently.
Don’t have anything hot to eat or drink while you are still numb. You can burn yourself with these foods and drinks and not even know it. It may also affect the surgical site.
Don’t put pressure on the affected area by spitting or drinking through a straw.
Don’t touch your surgical site, even if you are curious.
Don’t smoke. It’s best not to smoke before the surgery either, and you likely will have been told to quit before you have it. If you must smoke, wait a few days after the treatment.
Don’t ignore your pain. It can be easy to try to ignore the pain you feel, but it’s important to manage it. If you are concerned about the amount of pain you are in, it’s a good idea to call the office to report this issue. If you have been given pain medication, be sure to take it as prescribed to relieve your pain steadily around the clock.
At DFW Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, we want you to heal as quickly as possible so you can get back to your normal life. Give us a call if you have any problems. If you are in need of surgery, call us for a consultation.