surgical instructions

pre-surgical instructions


One Week Before

  • No aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication for one week prior to surgery.
  • If you are taking COUMADIN, PLAVIX, or PRAXADA, please call your prescribing physician for instructions to temporarily stop these medications prior to surgery.
  • No alcoholic beverages 3 days prior to your surgical procedure.
  • It is important to continue taking all prescribed medications unless otherwise instructed by your physician.
  • We suggest that you shop for softer foods and pick up your medications prior to your surgical date.
  • It is always best to have someone accompany you on the day of your surgery. You may not feel up to driving yourself home. IF YOU ARE PRESCRIBED PRE- SURGICAL SEDATIVES, YOU ARE REQUIRED TO HAVE A DESIGNATED DRIVER TO AND FROM OUR DENTAL OFFICE. 

Day of Surgery

  • Please eat a light to moderate meal before your surgical procedure. 
  • Wear comfortable casual clothing. We have cozy blankets and a seat warmer for your comfort during your procedure. Please avoid make up around the mouth area. 
  • Please feel free to bring your music and headset to your appointment. If you prefer, we have an iPod and headsets for your convenience. 
  • All patient consent forms must be completed prior to your surgical procedure. Please come 15 minutes early or one day before your surgical appointment to complete these forms. 
  • You may be prescribed medications to take one hour before your surgical procedure.

Medical Precautions

Avoid aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications ONE WEEK before surgery and 48 HOURS after your surgery. If you are on any anti- rheumatic, anti-arthritic, cold, circulation, or anti-coagulant medications. Some examples of these medications are Alka Seltzer, Excedrin, Aleve, and Motrin.

Some nutritional and herbal supplements may also cause blood thinning. Some of these products include: echinacea, Ephedra, garlic, gingko ginseng, kava, St. John’s Wort, vitamin E, fish oil and valerian. These medications may increase your risk for post-operative complications. It will increase your tendency to bleed during the procedure and during your post-surgical healing. 




post-surgical instructions


The after-effects of oral surgery vary per individual, so not all of these instructions may apply. Please feel free to call our office any time should you have any questions, or are experiencing any unusual symptoms following your treatment.



Patients who received sedation should return home from the office immediately upon discharge, and lie down with the head elevated until all the effects of the sedation have disappeared. Anesthetic effects vary by individual, and you may feel drowsy for a short period of time or for several hours. You should not operate any mechanical equipment or drive a motor vehicle for at least 12 hours or longer if you feel any residual effect from the sedation.


Do not disturb the surgical area today. Bite down gently but firmly on the gauze pack that we have initially placed over the surgical area, making sure that they remain in place. Do not change them for the first hour unless the bleeding is not being controlled. This is important to allow blood clot formation on the surgery site. DO NOT drink with a straw and DO NOT rinse or brush your teeth vigorously or probe the area with the tongue, any objects or your fingers. DO NOT SMOKE for at least 48 hours, since it is detrimental to the healing process. IT IS ADVISABLE TO AVOID SMOKING DURING THE TWO WEEKS OF HEALING FOR OPTIMAL SURGICAL HEALING.

Day 2

Simply hold a solution of tepid salt-water (1/2 tsp. salt with 1 cup water) for approximately 30 seconds every 4 to 6 hours to bathe the surgical area. Continue this for several days. You may start normal tooth brushing the day after the surgery or after bleeding is controlled. PLEASE AVOID THE SURGICAL AREA. It is imperative to keep your mouth clean, since an accumulation of food or debris may promote infection.


Bleeding should not be severe. If bleeding persists, this may due to the gauze pads being clenched between the teeth rather than exerting pressure on the surgery site. Try repositioning the gauze. If bleeding persists or becomes heavy, substitute a moist black tea bag (first soaked in water, squeezed dry and wrapped in a moist gauze) on the area for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues, please call our office.


Swelling and bruising are to be expected, and usually reaches its maximum in 48 hours. To minimize swelling, cold packs or ice bag wrapped in a towel should be applied to the face adjacent to the surgical area. This should be applied 20 minutes on then removed for 20 minutes during the first 12-24 hours after surgery. After 24 hours, it is usually best to switch from using the cold pack to applying moist heat or heating pad to the same area, until swelling has receded. Tightness of the jaw muscles may cause difficulty in opening the mouth. This should disappear within 7 days. Keep lips moist with cream or Vaseline to prevent cracking or chapping.


Eat any nourishing food that can be taken with comfort. It is advisable to confine the first day’s food intake to liquids or soft foods. Avoid hot or hard foods like nuts, sunflower seeds or popcorn, which may get lodged in the socket areas. Spicy and citric foods and beverages should also be avoided. Over the next several days, you may progress to more solid foods. Proper nourishment aids in the healing process. If you are a diabetic, maintain your normal diet as much as possible and follow your physician’s instructions regarding your insulin schedule. Strenuous activities and swimming should be avoided the first week after your surgery. If your surgery was near the maxillary sinus, avoid nose blowing for two weeks. Take a decongestant such a Actifed as needed.


Unfortunately, most oral surgery is accompanied by some degree of discomfort. Take the pain medication prescribed as directed. The local anesthetic administered during your surgery normally has a 3-hour duration, and it may be difficult to control the pain once the anesthetic wears off. We therefore, advise you to take the pain medication immediately after your surgery. If you do not achieve adequate pain relief, Please call our office or the emergency number. Taking the pain medication with soft food and a large volume of water will lessen any side effects of nausea or stomach upset. If you were prescribed an antibiotic and are currently taking oral contraceptives, you should use an alternate method of birth control for the remainder of this cycle.



Keeping your mouth clean after oral surgery is essential. Keep using salt-water solution to gently rinse your mouth at least 2-3 times daily for the next five days. Dr. Naval may prescribe an oral rinse, chlorohexidine, to start 3-4 days after your surgery. Begin your normal tooth brushing routine the following day. Soreness and swelling may prevent rigorous brushing of all areas, but make every effort to clean your teeth within your comfort level. AVOID BRUSHING NEAR THE SURGICAL SITE NEAR THE SUTURES.


Apply warm compresses to the skin overlying areas of swelling for 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off to help soothe these tender areas. This will also aid in reducing swelling and stiffness. If you were given an irrigating syringe, start using it the third day after surgery to keep the extraction site clean. Fill it with warm salt water and gently irrigate any open sockets gently, especially after eating.


Loss of sensation of the lip and chin may occur, usually following lower wisdom teeth removal. This is usually temporary and disappears within a few days or weeks.

It is our desire that your recovery be as smooth and pleasant as possible. If you have any questions about your progress or any symptoms you are experiencing, please call our office at (805) 563-4404