The bone graft is made up of many particles; you may find small granules in your mouth from the graft site for the first several days. Do not be alarmed, it is normal to have some of them come out of the graft site and into your mouth. There are some things you could do to minimize the amount of particles that become dislodged:
- Do not apply pressure with your tongue or finger to the grafted area, as the material is movable during the initial healing.
- Do not lift or pull the lip to look at the sutures. This can cause damage to the wound site.
- If a membrane was used, it will appear white. Sutures will need to be removed in 2 weeks.
- Antibiotics should be taken as directed. It is important to complete the entire cycle of antibiotics.
- Ibuprofen: 800mg every 6 hours for first 2 days.
- The doctor will prescribe additional pain medication if necessary.
- Always wash your hands before and after touching bloody gauze.
- There should be minimal bleeding in the mouth, if bleeding is excessive, bite the gauze inside the cheeks, which will put pressure on the surgical site.
- Gauze packs need to be changed every 1–1 ½ hours.
- Remove gauze while eating, drinking, and at bedtime.
- If the gauze is pink and there is no active bleeding, you may discontinue using the gauze.
- Swelling is to be expected in the mid-facial area above the back teeth.
- Keep your head elevated when resting. It is best to sleep on an extra firm pillow at night.
- Firmly apply a cold pack or ice bag wrapped in a towel to the face or cheeks over surgical site for the first 48 hours. There is no need to sleep with an ice pack.
- After 48 hours, switch to moist heat, warm towels, or a heating pad.
- Do not touch the area near the extraction for the first few hours after surgery.
- Keep fingers, toothpicks, and other objects out of the mouth, as it can cause infection.
- Do not rinse the day of surgery unless instructed by the doctor.
- The day after surgery, brush and rinse as usual, be careful near the surgical area.
- Use TheraSol® mouthwash 2x a day, morning and night. Rinse with warm salt water (½ tsp of salt dissolved in an 8-ounce glass of warm water): swish the water in the mouth for 1 minute, then spit the water out.
- Repeat this process 4–6 times a day for at least 2–3 days.
- AVOID milk and milk-based products for the first 24 hours. Milk can contaminate surgical areas and cause nausea and vomiting.
- AVOID hot liquids/foods.
- AVOID hard foods, crackers, chips, popcorn, peanuts, and seeds for 2 weeks after surgery.
- AVOID sodas and carbonated drinks. Do not sip on a straw.
- AVOID smoking for at least 1 week. Smoking is harmful to the healing process and can cause the surgery to fail.
Unless instructed otherwise, partials and dentures should not be worn for at a least 1 week.
For the first 2 weeks after surgery, a healthy soft diet is recommended (applesauce, smoothies, juices, pasta and scrambled eggs, etc.).