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Tips for Relieving Oral Surgery Discomfort

Any oral surgery procedure — from a routine wisdom tooth extraction to a complex jaw reconstruction — is likely to result in some level discomfort during recovery.

Oral Surgery Discomfort Relief Tips

You can minimize this and speed up your recovery if you follow your surgeon’s instructions carefully. But you can also take a proactive role in improving the healing process.

Steps to Take Before Oral Surgery

Set yourself up for proper healing by taking good care of yourself in the days leading up to your procedure.

Stay hydrated, eat a balanced diet and get plenty of rest. If you develop any type of illness — even if it’s just a case of the sniffles — let your oral surgeon know, as he or she may suggest postponing your procedure.

Tell your oral surgeon about all of the medicines you currently take, including prescriptions and over-the-counter vitamins and supplements.

Most will be safe to take as usual, but you may need to temporarily discontinue certain blood thinners, osteoporosis drugs and other medications. These could complicate your procedure.

Depending upon the type of surgery you undergo, you may need medication. Arrange for someone to pick up your prescription prior to surgery, so that it is ready for you immediately when you get home.

The last thing you will want to do is stop at the pharmacy after surgery.

Minimizing Pain after Oral Surgery

After your procedure, you’ll need to rest and take it easy.

This means no strenuous activity, otherwise you may increase your risk of complications. Be sure to take any medication — prescription or over-the-counter — that your oral surgeon prescribes. Propping your head up with pillows and applying ice packs can also help reduce your postoperative swelling.

You will need to stick to a liquid or soft-food diet for the first day or two following oral surgery as well.

Finally, keeping your mouth clean is essential. After the first 24 hours, gently rinse your mouth several times per day with warm salt water, or if advised by our office, an antibacterial rinse.

Steer clear of brushing or flossing until you get the go-ahead from your oral surgeon, however, as this can disturb the surgical site.

What Not to Do After Oral Surgery

Avoid smoking for as long as possible after your procedure.

The act of drawing on a cigarette can dislodge the blood clots, which can lead to painful complications like dry socket or an infection. Drinking through a straw carries the same risk, so use a cup or glass.

Avoid alcoholic beverages as well, because they can delay the healing process.

You’ll be able to return to your regular diet soon after your procedure, but for the best chance at proper healing, don’t go for anything hard, crunchy or chewy for at least six to eight weeks.

Mild pain or discomfort can be expected after any type of surgical procedure. Fortunately, the experienced surgeons aat Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah are highly trained and experienced in minimizing complications and discomfort. We are dedicated to a personalized level of treatment and compassionate care.

Contact our office today to learn more about our services, or to schedule a consultation to discuss oral surgery.


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