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Post-Operative Instructions

The removal of impacted teeth is a serious surgical procedure. Post-operative care is very important. Unnecessary pain and the complications of infection and swelling can be minimized if the instructions are followed carefully. 
At any time of day or night if the need arises please feel free to call our office at 604 273 5655
After 5 o'clock p.m. on holidays, or on the weekend please phone our answering service at 604-817-7011 (Emergency Only)


Immediately Following Surgery
  • The gauze pad placed over the surgical area should be kept in place for a half-hour. After this time, the gauze pad should be removed and discarded.

  • Vigorous mouth rinsing or touching the wound area following surgery should be avoided. This may initiate bleeding by causing the blood clot that has formed to become dislodged.

  • Take the prescribed pain medications as soon as you begin to feel discomfort. This will usually coincide with the local anesthetic becoming diminished.

  • Restrict your activities on the day of surgery and resume normal activity when you feel comfortable.

  • Place ice packs to the sides of your face where surgery was performed. Refer to the section on Swelling for an explanation.


  • Blood streaked saliva and minor oozing are normal for the 1st three days


  • If extensive oozing, place a piece of damp gauze directly over the surgical site and bite firmly for one hour. A gauze tea bag may also be used.

  • Semi-sitting position is suggested with rest while attempting to control bleeding

  • If these measures do not stop the bleeding please phone our office


Swelling reaches a maximum amount 48 hours after surgery. It takes a few more days after that to go away completely. Much discomfort and swelling can be minimized by applying an ice pack to your face over the area of surgery as soon as possible following the operation. After 48 hours do not use the ice pack anymore - change to a hot compress.



Postoperative pain requiring strong pain pills usually persists 2-3 days after surgery. If the pain gets worse after the third day, or if the pain returns after you have felt better, please call our office. 



Do not attempt to remove them yourself. Unless otherwise directed they will dissolve in approximately 7 - 14 days.



Although a regular diet may not be possible for a few days, nutritious liquids and soft foods should be taken (e.g. juices, soups, eggnogs). IT IS IMPORTANT TO DRINK PLENTY OF LIQUIDS AND EAT POST-OPERATIVELY STARTING ON THE DAY OF SURGERY. 


Oral Hygiene

Do not rinse the mouth the day of surgery. Start rinsing GENTLY the next day with warm salt water (half a teaspoon salt to a glass of warm water) after each meal and at bedtime no more than 4 times per day. Cleaning of teeth, gums, and other soft tissues must be done after eating. Use a soft brush or gauze wrapped around the finger to clean. There will be a cavity where the tooth was removed. Over the next month the cavity will gradually fill with new tissue. In the meantime, the area should be kept clean, especially after meals. 



It is advisable to not take alcohol while taking pain pills. Use extreme caution if you have to drive while on pain pills. It is best to have someone else drive for you. 


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