Pre- and Post-Operative Instructions

In preparation for your upcoming procedure, please take note of the following:

  • If you are opting for general anesthesia or intravenous sedation, do not eat or drink anything 6-8 hours prior to your appointment and make sure you have an adult present to escort you home. (Local anesthesia has no food or water restrictions, and you may leave unescorted).
  • You should take any prescribed medication (e.g.: blood pressure, heart) on schedule with a small sip of water. Do not take any narcotic pain medication prior to your appointment as this could cause nausea when combined with general anesthesia.
  • If you have any condition that requires pre-medication such as a heart murmur or artificial joint, please make arrangements for a prescription from the doctor.
  • Do not plan any strenuous activities for 48 to 72 hours following your procedure. 
  • Wear comfortable, loose fitting clothing for your appointment.
  • Arrange for an escort to accompany you to your appointment and and accompany you home following surgery.

Following Extraction of Teeth

We have prepared the following post-operative instructions for you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to bring them to our attention.

In case of profuse bleeding, uncontrolled pain, persistent nausea or abnormal elevation of temperature, call this office at 410-706-6195 or after hours page our service at 410-328-2337, pager #1333.

BLEEDING: will be under control by the time you leave our office. Some oozing or blood-tinged saliva may persist for up to 24 hours. Should excessive bleeding occur, it may be controlled with pressure. Apply a folded gauze pad over the area and bite firmly for 45 minutes. This may need to be repeated.

PAIN: is best controlled by the medications recommended by the doctor. They are most effective when taken before the local anesthesia diminishes and normal sensation returns to the area. Do not take pain pills on an empty stomach. Narcotic pain medication such as codeine, oxycodone, or hydrocodone may cause nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, dizziness, itching or constipation. If these side effects occur, discontinue the medication. You may take an alternative over the counter pain medication as necessary or call our office for assistance.

SWELLING: may occur immediately and increase gradually over 24-48 hours. Swelling from the surgical procedure will maximize at 48-72 hours. Ice packs applied externally to the area at 20 minutes intervals throughout the day of surgery may help control swelling, but only use them if advised to by our office.  Sleeping with the head of bed elevated above the level of the heart for the first two post-operative nights may tend to lessen swelling.

NAUSEA: may result from a general anesthetic or the drugs prescribed for pain. Drinking a small glass of a carbonated beverage will generally control mild nausea.

DIET: soft foods and liquids will be required for 24-48 hours following surgery. Avoid hot, spicy foods. Do not drink through a straw or smoke (if you do) for at least 48 hours. If you had surgery on only one side of the mouth, favor the other side while chewing for the first few days.

ORAL HYGIENE: should not be neglected. Brush your teeth as usual and rinse with warm salt water after each meal beginning gently the night of surgery. Do not brush the surgical area for 4 - 5 days.

ACTIVITY: should be restricted to a minimum for the first 2-3 days. Strenuous work or exercise may promote bleeding. If you have had a general anesthetic or sedation, we must require that you be accompanied home by a responsible adult. Under no circumstances are you to drive a car for at least 24 hours.

FEVER: after surgery it is normal for the body temperature to be slightly elevated for 24 hours.

SIDE EFFECTS: such as an ear ache, temporary ache of adjacent teeth, restricted mouth opening, stretching or cracking at the corners of the mouth or discoloration of the skin may occur postoperatively. These are temporary conditions that will improve as healing progresses.