AFTER TOOTH EXTRACTION

To control bleeding at the extraction site, apply pressure to the site by biting on the gauze for 30 minutes. If bleeding or oozing of the blood persists, repeat for another 30 minutes with a gauze pad or a tea bag. It is important that when there is peristant bleeding, continuous pressure is applied for the entire 30 minutes without removal of the gauze pad or tea bag during that time interval.

To reduce swelling an ice pack may be used during the first six hours after the surgical procedure.

For pain, the dentist will have either written prescription strength anti-inflammatory medication or narcotic medication. If you are taking a narcotic medication it may make you drowsy. In either case, take the medication as needed for pain.

If an antibiotic was prescribed, make sure you finish the entire prescription even if all the signs and symptoms of infection are gone. This will ensure that the area will heal properly.

In order to maintain the blood clot at the extraction site, the following is discouraged during the first 24 hours after an extraction: no smoking, no rinsing, and no sucking through a straw.

After 24 hours you may gently rinse with warm salt water (1 Tsp per 8 oz cup) and brush your teeth.

If you have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to contact our office.

AFTER ROOT CANAL TREATMENT

After a root canal it is not unusual to have sensitivity or discomfort in the area for several days. A root canal can be completed in a single visit but is most often performed over a period of two to three appointments. If there is pain, take the prescribed pain medication as indicated or an anti-inflammatory pain medication such as Advil or Motrin. If the pain becomes more intense or if there is a swelling you must see the dentist for an additional root canal treatment.

Usually between root canal appointments the canal opening is covered with a piece of temporary filling material which resembles clay. There is no need for concern if a small portion of the temporary filling breaks off in between appointments.

If an antibiotic was prescribed it is important to finish the entire prescription even if all the signs and symptoms of infection are gone. This will ensure that the area will heal properly.

When a root canal is completed and the canals are filled, the tooth is still structurally weak. This is because when a root canal is performed the center of the tooth is hollowed out in order to access the nerves of the tooth. Care must be taken to avoid chewing hard food on root canal treated teeth because it can lead to irreversible fracture and loss of the tooth. To restore a root canal treated tooth and prevent possible fracture a crown is usually indicated.

If you have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to contact our office.

AFTER PERIODONTAL (GUM) SURGERY

Your gums will most likely be sore when the anesthetic wears off for one or two days. It is advisable to take some anti-inflammatory pain medication such as Advil/Motrin or prescription pain medication as needed.

Slight bleeding is normal however if there is persistant bleeding or oozing of blood you may apply direct pressure on the gums for 30 minutes with gauze or a tea bag.

To reduce swelling an ice pack may be used during the first six hours after the surgical procedure.

If an antibiotic was prescribed it is important to finish the entire prescription even if all the signs and symptoms of infection are gone. This will ensure that the area will heal properly.

It is important that during the healing phase, oral hygiene is maintained. This means that brushing your teeth should still be done as tolerated. A prescription mouth rinse will be prescribed which will aid in keeping the gums and teeth clean. Flossing is still encouraged except at the surgical site for the first week.

Stay on a soft food diet initially and gradually progress to your regular foods as tolerated. Avoid any attempts to remove the stitches yourself. If a periodontal dressing was placed, you may remove it after the first 48 hours if it is irritating.

If you have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to contact our office.

AFTER FILLINGS

If a silver amalgam filling was placed do not chew on the filling for 24 hours. Wait until the numbness from the anesthetic has worn off before having any hot or cold temperature liquids.

With white composite bonded fillings, you may chew on the filling immediately however, it is advisable that you wait until the numbness from the anesthetic wears off so that you don't mistakenly bite your tongue or cheek.

If the tooth has a deep cavity, the filling will end up being large and very close to the nerve of the tooth. The close proximity of the nerve to the filling may cause throbbing which typically lasts for 24 to 48 hours after the filling is placed. Cold sensitivity often remains for a month or longer. If the throbbing lasts longer than 2 days or the sensitivity becomes severe, call the office and we will discuss the possible need for a root canal.

AFTER CROWN AND BRIDGE

Temporary Crowns:

If you have a temporary acrylic crown, do not chew anything hard or sticky on that tooth. In addition, avoid chewing gum since the gum will stick to the temporary crown and would be difficult to remove. The temporary crown is cemented with temporary cement therefore be careful not to dislodge the crown when you are flossing. It is important to brush everywhere so that the gum tissue around the temporary crown will heal nicely. It is normal to experience sensitivity when eating on the tooth with the temporary crown however, if you experience throbbing or pain please call the office.

Permanent Crowns:

When the permanent crown is first placed in, you will notice that it fits more snugly into the gums and against the adjacent teeth. The final ceramic crown is cemented with a permanent cement however you should wait approximately 4 hours before chewing any hard or sticky substances on the tooth. Maintenance of the permanent crown or bridge with regular cleanings and flossing is important in preventing future decay around the crown margins.

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