If you want to promote healing and reduce your chances of complications after oral surgery, it is important that you follow all instructions given to you by your doctor or dentist. After surgery, you should always wait at least two hours before attempting to eat anything. This is because your mouth is still numb, and you risk damaging the soft tissues when you bite down.

Root Canal Therapy

After having a root canal procedure, you should expect some pain and discomfort for a few days. Try and avoid chewing on the side of your mouth that the root canal took place on. This will minimize your discomfort and help you avoid irritating the area. It also allows for the restorative material to finish setting. You’ll need to take antibiotics to treat the remaining infection. If you notice severe pain, a reaction to the meds, or loss of the filling, contact your dentist.

Crowns and Bridges

Before getting a permanent crown, you’ll receive a temporary one. It’s not as sturdy so you’ll need to be careful when you clean your mouth or when you’re eating. Brush the area very gently and do not pull on the tooth when flossing. Avoid chewing sticky or extremely chewy foods. There might be some irritation after the temporary or permanent is put in place for a little while. A warm salt water rinse is recommended.

After the permanent crown or bridge is in place, you might feel a little awkward. Your mouth needs time to adjust, but it should start feeling normal in a week or so. If your bite doesn’t feel natural after this time, contact your dentist.

White Fillings (Bondings)

You’ll probably feel sensitive after the anesthesia wears off so avoid hot and cold for a few days.

Scaling and Root Planing

After this procedure, you’ll probably experience slight soreness and irritation for a few days. Rinse your mouth with warm salt water a few times per day to relieve the pain and clean the area. Brush gently so as not to irritate the area further. If you are experiencing swelling or stiffness, you can use a cold compress on the area. Avoid hard and chewy foods for a couple of days to make sure the area heals right. If you are still in pain or swollen after a few days, contact your dentist.

Veneers

Before getting a permanent veneer, you’ll receive a temporary one. This is not as sturdy, so you’ll need to be careful when cleaning and chewing. Brush the area gently, so you don’t dislodge it. Avoid sticky and chewy foods. There may be some sensitivity and irritation once the temporary or permanent is placed. A warm salt water rinse is recommended.

When the veneer is put in place, you might feel awkward. Your mouth needs time to adjust, but it should start feeling like a natural tooth in about a week. If your bite doesn’t feel natural after this time, contact your dentist.

Extractions

After you have surgery, you’ll need some time to rest. Make sure a friend drives you home because of the anesthesia. You should be ready for bleeding from the extraction site for a little while after. Gauze will be put in place after the surgery, and you’ll need to change it out periodically. If bleeding occurs after 24 hours, call your dentist. Do not lie flat while resting; this could make the bleeding last longer. Your dentist will give you pain medicine so take this as instructed for soreness. You can also use an ice pack for pain.

Eat the recommended soft foods after surgery such as gelatin, pudding, yogurt, mashed potatoes, ice-cream, and soups. Do not use a straw when drinking as this can loosen stitches and slow the clotting process. If you have long-lasting pain, irritation, or bleeding, call your dentist for a follow-up.