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Surgical Instructions

It is important to us that our patients are informed during every step of their treatment so that they are well prepared and have the chance to ask questions. If you have a surgical procedure in our office, we will provide specific instructions for your post-operative care.  The most common procedure is the extraction of a tooth, and the following instructions apply to that procedure, but may be applied to others as well.

If you have guaze placed over the surgical site when the procedure is completed, it is imortant to keep firm steady pressure over the site for the specified time, usually one hour.

It is normal to have some blood from the site for the first 24 hours.  This would be described as oozing, and should not be of concern.  If you feel that there is excessive bleeding, you should contact Dr. James.

It is important to avoid disturbing the blood clot during the first 24 hours post operatively.  Avoid any vigorous rinsing, forceful spitting, drinking through a straw, or SMOKING for the first 24 hours. Prolonged bleeding, or a dry socket condition may occur if you ignore these instructions.

AFTER 24 hours, you may resume normal brushing and flossing, just be careful near the surgical site. At the 24 hour time, you may also begin a gentle rinse with warm salt water (1/2 teaspoon of salt to 8 ounces of water), repeat the rinse 3 -4 times per day for the next three to five days.

Maintain as good a diet as you can, since proper nutrition is essential to good healing. It is also helpful to increase your fluid intake during the first 5 - 7 days to help your body heal. Of course, water is best, and you should avoid alcoholic drinks, as they tend to increase blood flow to the head (which could increase bleeding).

If an antibiotic is prescribed in conjunction with your procedure, it is important to take it as directed. Taking the full course of antibiiotics, even though you may feel the infection is gone, helps prevent the growth of bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics. If you have a problem you feel is caused by the antibiotic, especially iching, rash, or difficulty breathing, discontinue the antibiotic, but contact Dr. James immediately.

If you have any questions or concerns about your post operative healing, please fel free to contact our office.

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