John a Carroll DDS, Oral & Maxillofacial John A. Carroll DDS Colorado Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery

John A. Carroll, DDS
Colorado Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery

26 West Dry Creek Circle, Suite 740
Littleton, CO 80120
303 224 0500 PH
303 224 0606 FX


After Wisdom Teeth

BLEEDING: Close gently on a gauze sponge positioned over the socket(s) of your extracted tooth/teeth. Change your gauze sponges every 20 minutes until your active bleeding stops. Bleeding may be persistent, but should steadily decrease over time. If active bleeding continues after several hours of closing on gauze sponges, or if your bleeding seems excessive, substitute a wet tea bag for the gauze sponge. Call our office if you still have active bleeding 30 minutes after closing on a tea bag.

PAIN: You will experience some discomfort following oral surgery. Your discomfort should be tolerable if you use prescribed or OTC analgesics as directed. If your pain seems excessive, or if your pain worsens several days following your surgery, call our office.

SWELLING AND BRUISING: You will experience some facial swelling after your surgery. Slight bruising can occur below the jaw line, especially if you had lower teeth removed. Applying ice packs intermittently to your face the day of your surgery may help to decrease post-operative swelling. If your surgery was done with a local anesthetic only, your swelling should peak within 12 to 24 hours, and then subside over the next two to three days. If you had an intravenous anesthetic or sedation, your swelling will peak 48 to 72 hours later. Swelling should then resolve over the next five to seven days. Swelling that develops and/or increases several days after your surgery may indicate infection. Call our office if you experience late or excessive post-operative swelling.

DIET: Limit your diet to liquids on the day of surgery. Acceptable foods include juices and other non-carbonated beverages, soups, Jell-O®, pudding, ice cream, yogurt, etc. Do not drink through a straw. You may eat soft foods the following day. Beginning on post-op day three, advance your diet as your comfort allows.

MEDICATIONS: Take your prescribed and/or dispensed pain medication as directed. Do not drive a motor vehicle, operate machinery or perform tasks requiring intact reflex and/or cognitive capabilities for at least 12 hours following your last dose of prescription narcotic pain relievers. Take all other prescribed or dispensed medications as directed.

ACTIVITY: Rest and remain relatively inactive the day of your surgery. Keep your head elevated. Light physical activity may be initiated the following day. By post-op day three, you may resume a more normal level of physical activity. If you received intravenous anesthesia or intravenous sedation for your surgery, do not drive a motor vehicle, operate machinery or perform any functions requiring intact reflex and/or cognitive capabilities for at least 24 hours following your surgery.

DRUG ALLERGY: Allergic reactions to injected anesthetic medications and prescribed oral pain relievers and antibiotics are rare. Mild allergies will elicit itching, rash and possibly hives. Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction that causes swelling of the throat and constriction of the windpipe interfering with breathing. If you think you are experiencing anaphylaxis, call 911 immediately. If you experience any signs or symptoms of a mild drug allergy, discontinue taking the medication and call our office. If there is any delay in reaching Dr. Carroll or the on-call doctor, and your reaction to medications is worsening, go to your closest hospital emergency room or telephone 911. An upset stomach is not a symptom of a drug allergy.

UPSET STOMACH: Many patients experience nausea and one or more episodes of vomiting following oral surgery. Swallowing blood irritates the stomach lining. Post-surgical pain medicines may also upset your stomach. Nausea and vomiting are generally self-limiting. If you experience persistent nausea and/or more than two episodes of vomiting, call our office.

SMOKING: Do not smoke for at least five days following your surgery.

ORAL HYGIENE: Gently brush your teeth the morning following your surgery, exercising care not to bump the gum tissue near the extraction sites. You may also gently rinse your mouth with warm salt water two to three times each day starting the day following your surgery.

DRY SOCKET: This term refers to a loss of the protective blood clot in your tooth socket following the extraction. Dry sockets develop three to five days following extraction, occur almost exclusively in the lower tooth sockets and present as a dull aching pain in the jaw, sometimes extending toward the ear. There may be an accompanying bad odor or taste. If you experience these symptoms several days following extractions, call our office.  

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