Normal oozing may occur for up to 24 hours or more following surgery and is controlled by firm biting pressure on several gauze pads placed over the tooth socket. Keep gauze packs in mouth until you eat. Replace them after eating and keep them in until bedtime.

Swelling and sometimes bruising are common after surgery. The maximum swelling, pain and jaw stiffness normally occurs 2 or 3 days after surgery. Apply ice packs for 15 minutes on then 15 off until bedtime on the day of the surgery. This will keep swelling to a minimum. Also keep your head elevated until bedtime. Moist heat after 36 hours may help jaw soreness.

The greatest amount of discomfort is in the first 6 to 8 hours after surgery. Never take pain medication on an empty stomach. Take pain medicine only as directed. If itching or a rash develops, stop taking all medications and contact our office immediately.

Difficulty in opening the jaws is common after third molar (wisdom) extractions. Chewing gum at intervals will help with muscle soreness along with moist heat after 36 hours.

No rinsing or smoking for 24 hours following surgery. The day after surgery, rinse with a glass of warm water mixed with one teaspoon of salt five times a day for at least one week. Brush and floss as usual but avoid the surgical sites. The corners of your mouth may dry and crack so keep them moist with Vaseline.

It is important to maintain a good nutrition following surgery. Eat a lukewarm soft diet the day of surgery. Eat whatever you can the day after surgery but stay away from hard chewy foods. Drink plenty of fluids.

Infection following surgery is rare but if swelling and discomfort worsens after the 4th day following surgery along with a foul taste, fever and difficulty swallowing, contact the office immediately.

Tea bags are useful to control bleeding at home. If bleeding seems to be excessive at home tonight, wet a tea bag with warm water and place it over the bleeding area, bite down firmly for one to two hours and bleeding should stop.