Surgical Intructions

Prior To Surgery

  • Schedule time off work (if needed).
  • Prepare soft foods ahead of time that you can easily eat on the day of surgery (shakes, yogurt, well-cooked pasta, mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs, etc.. ).

Day of Surgery

With Sedation

  • Make sure a responsible adult is available to pick you up after your appointment, accompany you home and be available for the first 24 hours after your surgery.
  • Do NOT eat or drink for 6 hours prior to the surgery (for oral) – 8 hours (for IV).
  • Check with the office if you take daily medications – some should still be taken prior to surgery.
  • No water, tea, chewing gum – Ingesting food or fluids prior to your surgery is a serious health concern that will result in your surgery being cancelled.
  • You should still brush your teeth the morning of your surgery.
  • Please arrive at the office 10 minutes prior to your scheduled surgery time.
  • You are legally impaired for 24 hours after sedation. Do not perform tasks that require concentration, memory, or decision-making skills such as driving & signing contracts.

Home Care Instructions – Day 1

  • You will have had local anaesthesia (freezing) during your surgery but that will wear off in a couple hours. Begin taking your medications when you get home, before you have pain.
  • Take all medication exactly as prescribed.
  • In the first 24 hours following surgery, gently apply an ice pack wrapped in a towel to the face for 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off, as much as possible.
  • Some bleeding from the site of the procedure is normal on the day of surgery. This should be minor and controllable with pressure applied with moistened gauze. Do not spit blood as the spitting action can increase bleeding.
  • Good nutrition and fluids are important after surgery. Stick to cool, non-carbonated, non-alcoholic, caffeine-free, sodium-free beverages including juices, herbal tea and dairy drinks. Do not drink anything scalding hot or frozen. Sip from a cup and do not use a straw.
  • Do not smoke. Smoking deprives your body of necessary oxygen and impairs your ability to heal.
  • Do not brush the area where you had surgery or where there are stitches. You may brush your other teeth. Do not rinse your mouth vigorously.
  • Recline, but do not lie down flat. This will be more comfortable and can reduce swelling.
  • Relax at home and do not engage in strenuous activity for at least 3 days.

Home Care Instructions – Days 2-5

  • Ease into your daily activities. You can return to your normal exercise levels 3 days after surgery. If you notice bleeding or pain during your normal activities, scale back and give yourself more time to recover.
  • There may still be a small amount of blood coming from the site of the procedure. This is normal and is usually very minimal.
  • Bruising and swelling may increase in the first few days after surgery. Swelling reaches its peak by day 3. If you have bruising and swelling accompanied by acute pain, fever, or a severely distorted appearance, contact our office.
  • Take the antibiotic medication, steroid (Dexamethasone) if prescribed, pain-killers, and mouth rinse as directed. You may wish to switch from prescription pain medication to acetaminophen (Tylenol).
  • Begin using the prescription mouth rinse twice each day starting the day after surgery. This will keep the surgical area clean. Do not brush the teeth in the area of your surgery until you have been advised to do so. This is usually not until after 2 weeks of healing.
  • You may have a dressing over the surgery site which is light pink in color and looks like chewing gum. This is used to make the area more comfortable after surgery. It will be removed at your follow-up appointment. If it comes off earlier and there is no bleeding, that is okay. The site is also sutured and healing will not be affected.
  • Do not pull or attempt to remove any sutures from the area.

In order to achieve the most success, grafts need to be immobilized. Avoid any pressure to the face that may disturb the graft. Gum grafts need 3 weeks. Activities that may disturb your graft include:

  • Chewing with a temporary denture that was intended for esthetics only
  • Sleeping on the side of surgery
  • Resting your face on your hands
  • Accidental bump or other sports related contact

Call the office (604) 684-9444 Monday to Friday 8am-4pm or the doctor’s cell (after hours) if you experience any of the following:

  • Excessive bleeding which does not stop after sustained pressure with moist gauze for 20 minutes.
  • Extreme pain that cannot be controlled by your pain medication
  • Fever