How to Prepare for Recovery After Oral Surgery in Los Angeles
Are you preparing to undergo oral surgery? Caring for your oral health is incredibly important, and whether you’re getting your wisdom teeth removed or undergoing a more serious procedure, preparing for your recovery is crucial to ensuring a smooth and successful healing process.
Regardless of the procedure, this quick guide will provide helpful tips and information to prepare for your post-surgery recovery, including the best foods to eat, what to avoid, and how to manage pain and swelling. We will also discuss common side effects and complications to watch out for and when to seek medical attention.
Following these guidelines and taking care of yourself during your recovery period can ensure a speedy and stress-free healing process when getting oral surgery in Los Angeles.
Types of Dental Surgery
It’s important to understand that different types of dental surgeries have varying recovery times, depending on their complexity. Here’s a brief breakdown of some of the most common types of dental surgery procedures and what to expect during their recovery periods.
Wisdom Teeth Removal
Wisdom teeth removal is a common procedure that many people have to undergo. The recovery period for wisdom teeth removal and other teeth extractions typically lasts three to five days. However, it could last longer if complications arise.
During this time, you may experience:
- Slight pain
Following your oral surgeon’s instructions is essential, such as eating soft foods and avoiding using straws. Keep the surgical site clean to speed up your recovery.
Dental Implant Surgery
Dental implant surgeries are becoming more and more common as people become more conscious of their oral health and looks. The recovery period can last anywhere from three to six months, as it takes time for the dental implants to fuse with the jawbone successfully.
You may need to avoid eating hard or crunchy foods during this time. You may also need to be extra meticulous with your oral hygiene routine.
Root Canal Therapy
During a root canal procedure, your dentist will remove infected root pulp. Then, they’ll clean up the roots of the tooth. The recovery time for this procedure is usually a few days, during which you may want to avoid chewing on the tooth and take over-the-counter pain relievers as suggested by your dentist.
Preparing for Oral Surgery
We’ll share some post-operative tips for recovery below. But did you know that with the right preparation, you might be able to enjoy a smoother and quicker recovery? Here are a few things you can do to make the process easier.
Follow Pre-Operative Instructions
Your oral surgeon will give you specific instructions to follow leading up to the procedure. This may include avoiding certain foods or medications and stopping smoking (note that these are great suggestions for general oral hygiene, too!). Follow these instructions carefully, which will help ensure a successful surgery and faster recovery.
Arrange Transportation and Support
You will likely be under anesthesia during the procedure and unable to drive home afterward. Ensure you have arranged transportation and someone to stay with you for the first 24 hours to assist you with any needs.
Stock Up on Soft Foods
Following oral surgery, you typically must stick to a soft-food diet for a few days (although, again, your oral surgeon will provide guidance on this, depending on your treatment and recovery plan). Stock up on foods such as yogurt, applesauce, and mashed potatoes to ensure a smooth transition to solid foods.
How to Recover From Oral Surgery
Now that the big day’s here, you’ll want to ensure you follow some post-operative tips for a speedy recovery from oral surgery in Los Angeles. After all, oral surgery, like any other form of surgery, requires proper post-operative care to ensure a speedy and complete recovery.
If you’ve just undergone oral surgery, here are some practical tips to help you recover faster and more comfortably.
Swelling is a common side effect of oral surgery, which can cause discomfort and make it difficult to eat or talk. To manage swelling, apply an ice pack to your cheek for 20 minutes at a time, with 20-minute breaks in between.
You can do this for up to 48 hours after the surgery. Avoid applying heat to the treated area, as it can increase swelling.
After oral surgery, it is normal to experience some bleeding for the first few hours. To control bleeding, bite on a clean gauze pad for 30 to 45 minutes.
If bleeding persists, replace the pad with a new one. Do not rinse, spit, or brush your teeth vigorously; it can disturb the blood clot and prolong bleeding.
Take Pain Medications
Oral surgery is usually accompanied by some degree of pain or discomfort. To manage pain, your doctor may prescribe pain medications or recommend over-the-counter pain relievers.
Take your medications as directed, and do not exceed the recommended dose. Contact your doctor immediately if you experience severe pain or have adverse reactions to pain medications.
Stick to a Soft Diet
As mentioned, you may need to stick to a soft or liquid diet for a few days after oral surgery. Avoid hot, spicy, or acidic foods and drinks that irritate the surgical site. Instead, choose soft foods such as applesauce, yogurt, smoothies, and soup.
Stay hydrated and avoid using straws, as sucking can affect the blood clot (in the same way that vigorously brushing or rinsing your mouth can, as mentioned above).
Practice Good Oral Hygiene
After oral surgery, it’s crucial to maintain good oral hygiene to prevent infection and promote healing. However, be gentle when brushing near the surgical site and avoid using floss or toothpicks until your doctor gives you the green light. Use a saltwater rinse to keep the area clean and promote healing.
Book Oral Surgery in Los Angeles
Who better to trust with your oral health than our team of experts with over 40 years of experience? With our outpatient practice located in Santa Monica and hospital privileges at Providence St. John’s Health Center, we have treated countless patients with various issues, from reconstructive surgeries to orthognathic surgeries.
Contact us today to book your exam for oral surgery in Los Angeles, and let us help you achieve optimal oral health!