A smooth, comfortable healing period will be aided by your compliance with post-operative instructions.
Light bleeding or redness in your saliva is not unusual during the first 24 hours following surgical procedures. Bleeding will be best controlled by limiting your activities during the first day. Vigorous rinsing and forceful spitting tend to prolong or increase bleeding. If heavy or persistent bleeding is experienced, elevate your head and apply steady pressure at the source of the bleediing with gauze for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues, a moistened tea bag applied to the bleeding site may help. Uncontrolled or heavy bleeding is not typical. Please call the office immediately if you are experiencing this problem.
It is important that you continue regular medications prescribed by your physician. We may request that you discontinue aspirin products and other blood thinners for a few days before your surgery.
Medications prescribed for your periodontal procedure should be taken as directed to keep you comfortable, avoid infection, and speed the healing process. Pain should be well controlled by the medications we prescribe. In most cases, comfort levels will improve within 24 hours. Please contact the office if you experience excessive or persistent pain.
An antibiotic is usually prescribed for your periodontal procedure. Please take the entire prescription as directed. It is important that you advise us of any allergies or sensitivities to antibiotics or other medications we may prescribe. If you develop a rash or notice other signs of a drug reaction, discontinue the medication and call the office immediately.
Swelling and bruising will sometimes accompany periodontal procedures, but will vary depending upon the type of treatment and your compliance with post-operative instructions.
Applying ice packs, in 20-minute intervals, for the first 24 hours following surgery will help minimize swelling and bruising. If you have had procedures in multiple sites you may alternate ice applications among them. Discontinue ice packs after 24 hours and begin moist heat applications and warm salt water rinses to reduce swelling and encourage healing.
It is very important that you take care to nourish yourself during the post-operative period. Studies have shown that a well nourished patient will heal more quickly and comfortably. Cold, soft foods and cold liquids are recommended for the first day. You may resume warm, solid foods the next day. Please avoid spicy and acidic foods, as well as hard, crunchy foods such as chips and nuts. Try to avoid heavy chewing over the surgical site.
Good oral hygiene is essential to proper healing. Warm salt water rinses should be started on the day after surgery. A quarter to half teaspoon of salt in an 8 oz glass of warm water should be used several times a day until you are advised to discontinue.
Gentle brushing on the biting surfaces of your teeth in the treated area is advised. Avoid any brushing or flossing at the gumline. Normal home care should be continued in all untreated areas of your mouth.
Sutures are meant to stay in place until your post-operative visit. If your sutures are resorbable they may dissolve on their own. Please do not attempt to remove your own sutures.
Periodontal packing, a form of surgical bandage, may be placed to protect the surgical area. Ideally, this material will stay in until your post-operative appointment. We request that you not intentionally remove the packing, but it may fall out on its own before you return to the office. If your dressing does come out, take extra care to avoid any trauma or irritation of the surgical site. It is rarely necessary to replace this material once it comes out.
Please limit all physical activity for the first day following your surgical procedure. If you have received any form of sedation, you may not drive or operate any machinery for at least 24 hours.
You should be able to resume normal daily activities a day or two after surgery. Heavy lifting and rigorous exercise is to be avoided for one week.
Tobacco and alcohol are strongly discouraged following periodontal surgery. Smoking will slow the healing process and diminish the benefits of treatment.
Alcohol should not be used in combination with any pain medication. Additionally, alcohol consumption may contribute to prolonged or excessive bleeding.
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Garry J. Bloch, D.M.D.
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Dr Garry Bloch your Pittsburgh Periodontist provides Dental Implants, Non-Surgical Periodontics, Bone Grafting, Cosmetic Periodontal Surgery.
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