Periodontal Surgery - Post-Operative Instructions

The post-operative instructions listed below should be followed accurately in order to speed your recovery.

  1. You may continue to brush and floss the untreated teeth as usual. However, do not vigorously rinse or spit within the first 24 hours. Beginning tomorrow rinse with the prescription mouthwash twice daily until the bottle is empty. You may also rinse with warm salt water (one-half teaspoon salt to one cup water).
  2. Some discomfort is to be expected and is usually most severe during the first six to eight hours following surgery. Many patients are able to manage the discomfort with Ibuprofen (Advil) 800mg every six hours. If you have been given a prescription pain reliever, take with food as directed.
  3. Swelling is to be expected and usually reaches its maximum during the first day or two. Apply ice to the side of the face 15 minutes on and 15 minutes off as often as possible for the first 48 hours. Frozen vegetable bags wrapped in dishtowels work nicely as they contour to the jaw.
  4. Keep your head elevated at all times for the first five to seven days following surgery. This will help decrease swelling and pain.
  5. The surgical site may continue to bleed slightly for a day or two. This is no cause for alarm. If heavy bleeding occurs, fold a piece of gauze (or use a wet or dry tea bag) and place over the bleeding area. Maintain firm pressure for 30 minutes. Avoid frequent pack changes, rinsing, and spitting or physical exertion until the bleeding has ceased.
  6. A periodontal dressing is often placed around the teeth to protect the surgical area and should not be disturbed. A soft diet will help prevent dislodgement of the dressing. Do not chew in the surgical areas or where dressing is placed. Often times, only one side of the mouth has been treated and you can cut food into small pieces and chew on the opposite side. If small pieces are lost, and you have no discomfort, there is no reason for concern. If large pieces break off or if the entire dressing becomes loose in the first two days, please contact our office.
  7. You may eat or drink what you feel up to once the local anesthetic has worn off. Avoid very hot foods or liquids for 24 hours. Soft foods like eggs, pastas, warm soups and yogurt are recommended. Drink plenty of fluids, but do not drink through a straw or create a sucking action in your mouth.
  8. DO NOT SMOKE. Smoking will dramatically delay the healing process.
  9. Keep lips moist with ChapStick or Vaseline to prevent chapping.
  10. If you have been prescribed an antibiotic and are currently taking oral contraceptives you should use an alternate method of birth control for the remainder of this cycle.
  11. If any unusual symptoms occur or if you have any questions concerning your progress, do not hesitate to call the office during business hours—(855) 813-2994—or if an emergency arises we may be reached 24 hours a day by calling (717) 564-7010.

 Call for an appointment:
(717) 564-7010

Make an Appointment
Dental Health Services
Practice Photo

Dr. Bryan Lauer

Dr. Lynda Mabene

Dr. David Detweiler Black

Dr. Marvin Berger

Share |
Dental Health Services
3550 Paxton Street
Harrisburg, PA 17111
General Info: (717) 564-7010