Columbia Oral & Facial Surgery Center


Surgical Instructions


Do not disturb the wound. Avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery. There will be a metal healing abutment protruding through the gingival (gum) tissue.


Some bleeding or redness in the saliva is normal for 24 hours. Excessive bleeding (your mouth fills rapidly with blood) can be controlled by biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues profusely, please call for further instructions.


Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling apply an ice bag, or a plastic bag or towel filled with ice, on the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the ice continuously, as much as possible, for the first 36 hours. After 36 hours, most patients can switch to gentle heat to the affected area(s) to aid the healing process.


Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid hot liquids or food. Soft food and liquids should be eaten on the day of surgery. Return to a normal diet as soon as possible unless otherwise directed.


You should begin taking pain medication BEFORE you feel the local anesthetic wearing off. Please try non-narcotic anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen (Advil®/Motrin®) and/or acetaminophen (Tylenol®) first (unless you have allergies or medical conditions that prevent you from taking these), to see if that adequately treats your pain. If indicated by the doctor, take the two medications at the same time.

Ibuprofen (Advil®/Motrin®): Do NOT exceed 3200mg daily for an adult. Consult our practice for individuals under 18.

Acetaminophen (Tylenol®): Do NOT exceed 4000mg daily for an adult. Consult our practice for individuals under 18.

For severe pain, the prescribed medication should be taken as directed. Do not take any of the above medication if you are allergic to them, or have been instructed by your doctor not to take it. Do not drive an automobile or work around machinery. Avoid alcoholic beverages. Pain or discomfort following surgery should subside more and more every day. If pain persists, it may require attention and you should call the office.


If prescribed, be sure to take the prescribed antibiotics as directed to help prevent infection.


Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing. The night of surgery, use the prescribed Peridex Oral Rinse before bed. The day after surgery, the Peridex should be used twice daily; after breakfast and before bed. Be sure to rinse for at least 30 seconds then spit it out. Warm salt water rinses (one teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) should be used at least 4-5 times a day as well, especially after meals. Brush your teeth and the healing abutments. Be gentle initially while brushing the surgical areas.

Do not use a WaterPic® device for 4 weeks after your procedure.


Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. If you exercise, throbbing or bleeding may occur. If this occurs, you should discontinue exercising. Keep in mind that you are probably not taking in normal nourishment. This may weaken you and further limit your ability to exercise. We generally recommend no strenuous activity for 7 days following most surgical procedure.


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