After Care



General Guidelines for all procedures:

Carefully follow all guidelines provided by our office, and, most importantly, practice good oral hygiene. Additional instructions following various types of treatment are listed below. Please click on the below topics for detailed instructions. In the event of an emergency please call our office. If you are experiencing a serious or life threatening emergency, please call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room.


Following Tooth Preparation:  Sensitivity and tenderness of the tooth and surrounding gums is common for the first day or two after a tooth has been prepared for a restoration. If the tenderness or sensitivity lasts longer than this, please contact our office. If anesthesia is used, avoid chewing, biting, and eating until the numbness wears off. The final restoration may be placed the same day that the tooth is prepared or may be placed during a separate appointment.

For Temporary Restorations:  Eat softer foods, and avoid foods that are particularly crunchy, chewy, or hard. Carefully clean around the restoration, brushing and flossing daily.  Be gentle when flossing, taking extra care not to loosen the temporary restoration. Slowly pulling the floss out by one end can help avoid putting too much pressure on the temporary. If the temporary restoration becomes loose or breaks, please call us immediately.

After Final Restoration Placement:  Avoid chewing on hard, crunchy, or sticky foods for 24 hours in order to give time for the cement to fully bond. Mild sensitivity to hot or cold foods is not unusual and should dissipate after a few weeks. If sensitivity lasts more than six weeks, please let the office know.

Ongoing Care:  Proper care of your restoration includes brushing your teeth after every meal and snack, and flossing at least once a day before bedtime. Rinsing your mouth with water or mouthwash with also help to remove any additional particles that may have been missed during brushing and flossing.

Please call our office if you are in pain or have any questions regarding your treatment.

Do not eat or chew until any numbness from anesthesia has worn off. If you are supervising a child who has had treatment, make certain that they are not eating or chewing while numb. Please make sure they do not bite their lips or tongue as doing so can cause serious injury to their soft tissue. Avoid sticky, crunchy, or hard foods for 24 hours.

Sensitivity to cold and heat, as well as any soreness, should not last more than a few days. Please call our office if you experience pain or discomfort for more than a few days.

Dentures and partials will often need several adjustments in order to fit comfortably. To help yourself adjust to your dentures you can practice reading aloud for a little while each day. Dentures should be removed overnight or for at least 6 hours a day to give your mouth and gums time to rest. At night you should remove your dentures and clean them. They should be stored in a clean container filled with denture cleaning solution. Food particles can become trapped under dentures causing inflammation or sore spots. Lightly brush the roof of your mouth, your tongue, and your gums after removing your dentures. You may have discomfort for a few days after receiving your final dentures or partials.

Ongoing care of your denture or partial includes brushing your teeth and the surrounding tissues after every meal and snack and flossing at least once a day before bedtime.  If you have full dentures,  brushing the dentures daily is very important. Rinsing your mouth with water or mouthwash will help to remove any additional particles that may have been missed during brushing and flossing.

Make sure to visit our office at least once a year to have your dentures or partial adjusted and checked by the doctor. Wearing ill-fitting dentures or partials without proper care and adjustment can cause bone loss in the jaw area and oral disease. Please call our office if you are experiencing ongoing pain or discomfort or if you have any concerns regarding your denture or partial.

Invisalign Instructions

Do

  • Use your fingers to put your aligners place.  First place the aligners over your front teeth, and then use your fingers to push the aligner down gently over your molars. When aligners are correctly inserted, they will fit all the way down on the teeth, with no space between the top of the aligners and the top of the teeth.  Aligners will fit tightly at first but should fit well at the end of the two week period.
  • Keep aligners in except when flossing, brushing, eating.  It’s also best to remove the aligners when drinking warm beverages such as coffee or tea.
  • Remove the aligner by pulling it off both sides of your back teeth simultaneously then lifting it off of your front teeth.
  • Place your aligners in the case we provided any time they are not being worn.
  • Clean aligners with a toothbrush and toothpaste.
  • Wear each set of aligners for two weeks unless our office directs you to vary from this schedule.
  • Wear aligners in the correct numerical order. (Each aligner is labeled by number and with a U or an L to designate upper or lower.)
  • Keep all of your old aligners and bring them to your orthodontic appointments.

Don’t

  • Don’t place your aligners in or on a napkin or tissue.  Many aligners have accidentally been thrown out this way!
  • Don’t use your teeth to “bite” your aligners into place.
  • If you have pets, don’t place your aligners anywhere that your pets can reach them. Pets are attracted to saliva and would enjoy chewing on your Invisalign® trays!
  • Do not use Denture cleaner, alcohol, or bleach to clean your aligners.
  • Do not use boiling water or warm water on your aligners.
  • Don’t chew gum with your aligners in.
  • It would be best not to smoke while wearing aligners. The smoke can stain the aligners as well as your teeth.

Just in Case

If you lose the tab attached to your tooth that helps the aligner snap on, please call our office right away so that we can determine if you need to come in before your next scheduled appointment.

If you lose one of your aligner trays, please wear the next tray if you have it. If you do not have the next tray, please wear the previous tray.  It is extremely important to use a tray to keep teeth from shifting.  Call our office to let us know which tray was lost so that we can determine if a replacement tray is needed.  There will be a fee if replacement trays are required.

For the First 48 Hours Following Bleaching:

Teeth are more susceptible to staining for the first 48 hours following bleaching treatments. For the first 48 hours after whitening, it is best to avoid dark-colored foods or beverages that can stain your teeth. Any item that can stain your clothes can also stain your teeth.

Avoid:

Berries, cola or other dark sodas, red wine, coffee and tea, tobacco, and ketchup, soy or other dark sauces.

Using Your Custom Trays:

Follow the instructions given by our office, placing the bleaching gel in the center of each tooth position on the tray so that the gel will rest against the anterior surface of the teeth once it is placed in your mouth. Wear trays for the recommended time. Rinse the mouth, and gently remove any gel remaining on your teeth with a soft bristle toothbrush. Clean the trays.

  • Some pain, bleeding, swelling, and seeping are normal following oral surgery. Please do not try to view the site by pulling on your lip and do not probe the area with your tongue or fingers. If you experience excessive bleeding or discomfort after 48-72 hours, please call our office immediately.
  • You can take ibuprofen or acetaminophen according to the instructions on the label or those provided by our office as needed.
  • Swelling around the face, eyes, and surgical site is not uncommon and may become more noticeable two to three days following surgery. Applying a cold compress to the face near the implant site will help minimize swelling. If using an ice pack, please do not apply ice directly to your skin but place a cloth between the ice and your skin at all times.  You may apply the cold compress for up to 20 minutes on and at least 20 minutes off as needed. After 36 hours the cold compress will have no further impact on swelling. After this period, the application of moist heat to the sides of the face can help reduce swelling.
  • A warm salt water rinse, approximately ½ teaspoon in an eight ounce glass of water, three times a day can be helpful.
  • Avoid brushing your teeth near the surgery site but brush and floss the rest of your mouth as instructed by our office.
  • For 24 hours following your surgery, do not suck on a straw, brush, rinse, spit, or smoke.
  • For the first 24 hours you may experience some cold and heat sensitivity. Avoid hot and spicy foods as well as carbonated and alcoholic beverages.
  • Restrict your activities on the day of your surgery. Avoid excessive work or play, and resume normal activity the following day as tolerated.
  • After the first day, gently rinse with a warm salt water rinse, approximately one-half teaspoon of salt in an eight ounce glass of water, three times a day.
  • During the first few days after surgery restrict your diet to liquids and soft foods such as soups, yogurt, juice, and smoothies.
  • Follow any other instructions provided by the office on your visit. Please take all medications as prescribed including your prescribed antibiotics to help prevent infection.
  • If you have a denture that overlaps the implant site, please minimize the use of the denture following surgery to allow the site to heal. After the first week, you should be able to gradually increase the amount of time you can wear your denture.
  • It is extremely important to keep your follow up appointment(s) so that we can monitor the healing process.
  • If pain and swelling are increasing after a few days, please call our office right away.
  • Some pain, bleeding, swelling, and seeping are normal following oral surgery. Please do not try to view the site by pulling on your lip and do not probe the area with your tongue or fingers. Avoid forcefully rinsing or spitting or drinking through a straw. Biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the wound for 30 minutes will help reduce bleeding. Some bleeding is normal for the first 24 hours. If bleeding continues please call our office.
  • Please take all medications, including mouth rinses, as prescribed.
  • After 24 hours, warm salt water rinses (one-half teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) can be used 4-5 times a day after meals.
  • After 24 hours, brush your teeth with a soft manual toothbrush. Be gentle with brushing the surgical areas.
  • Sutures may be placed after the surgery, and most sutures dissolve on their own.
  • Swelling and bruising may occur and may become more noticeable two to three days following surgery. Applying a cold compress to the face near the surgical site will help minimize swelling. If using an ice pack, please do not apply ice directly to your skin but place a cloth between the ice and your skin at all times.  You may apply the cold compress for up to 20 minutes on and at least 20 minutes off as needed. After 36 hours the cold compress will have no further impact on swelling. After this period, the application of moist heat to the sides of the face can help reduce swelling.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Stay away from spicy or acidic foods. Also avoid sharp and crunchy foods like tacos, chips and nuts. Tobacco and alcohol should not be used. Alcohol should not be used in combination with pain medications nor antibiotics.
  • Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. Avoid strenuous activity for 2-3 days.
  • If a surgical bandage was used, it will ideally remain in place for 24 hours. There is no need for you to remove it; it will come off when ready. Once it does, you can begin cleaning the wound gently with a cotton swab dipped in a mouth rinse.
  • Some pain, bleeding, swelling, and seeping are normal following oral surgery. Please do not try to view the site by pulling on your lip and do not probe the area with your tongue or fingers. Avoid forcefully rinsing or spitting or drinking through a straw. Biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the wound for 30 minutes will help reduce bleeding. Some bleeding is normal for the first 24 hours. If bleeding continues please call our office.
  • Please take all medications, including mouth rinses, as prescribed.
  • After 24 hours, brushing and oral hygiene procedures should be done as usual in all untreated areas. In the treated areas, please limit your oral hygiene to brushing using a soft manual toothbrush. Avoid dental flossing in treated areas during the first week following surgery. No undiluted mouthwash, salt water or peroxide rinses should be used during the first week following surgery.
  • Swelling and bruising may occur and may become more noticeable two to three days following surgery. Applying a cold compress to the face near the surgical site will help minimize swelling. If using an ice pack, please do not apply ice directly to your skin but place a cloth between the ice and your skin at all times.  You may apply the cold compress for up to 20 minutes on and at least 20 minutes off as needed. After 36 hours the cold compress will have no further impact on swelling. After this period, the application of moist heat to the sides of the face can help reduce swelling.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Stay away from spicy or acidic foods. Also avoid sharp and crunchy foods like tacos, chips and nuts. Tobacco and alcohol should not be used. Alcohol should not be used in combination with pain medications nor antibiotics.
  • Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. Avoid strenuous activity for 2-3 days.
  • If a surgical bandage was used, it will ideally remain in place for 24 hours. There is no need for you to remove it; it will come off when ready. Once it does, you can begin cleaning the wound gently with a cotton swab dipped in a mouth rinse.
  • Some pain, bleeding, swelling, and seeping are normal following oral surgery. Please do not try to view the site by pulling on your lip and do not probe the area with your tongue or fingers. Avoid forcefully rinsing or spitting or drinking through a straw. Biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the wound for 30 minutes will help reduce bleeding. Some bleeding is normal for the first 24 hours. If bleeding continues please call our office.
  • Please take all medications, including mouth rinses, as prescribed.
  • After 24 hours, warm salt water rinses (one-half teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) can be used 4-5 times a day after meals.
  • After 24 hours, brush your teeth with a soft manual toothbrush. Be gentle with brushing the surgical areas.
  • Sutures may be placed after the surgery, and most sutures dissolve on their own.
  • Swelling and bruising may occur. Applying a cold compress to the face near the surgical site will help minimize swelling. If using an ice pack, please do not apply ice directly to your skin but place a cloth between the ice and your skin at all times.  You may apply the cold compress for up to 20 minutes on and at least 20 minutes off as needed. After 36 hours the cold compress will have no further impact on swelling. After this period, the application of moist heat to the sides of the face can help reduce swelling. Alternate the warm pack on and off in 15 minute intervals as needed.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Stay away from spicy or acidic foods. Also avoid sharp and crunchy foods like tacos, chips and nuts. Tobacco and alcohol should not be used. Alcohol should not be used in combination with pain medications nor antibiotics.
  • Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery.
  • Please refrain from blowing your nose for up to four weeks following your surgery. Do not hold your nose when sneezing. Avoid flying in pressured aircraft, scuba diving, bearing down when lifting heavy objects, blowing up balloons, playing musical instruments that require a blowing action or any other activity that increases nasal or oral pressure for at least four weeks after surgery.
  • Please take all medications as prescribed, included decongestants as necessary.
  • It is important to keep your mouth clean after surgery to reduce the risk of infection and promote rapid healing. Start salt water rinses (one-half teaspoon of salt dissolved in an 8 ounce glass of water) the evening of surgery or the day following your procedure after each meal or four to five times daily.
  • Brush your teeth gently with a soft manual toothbrush on the evening of your surgery or the first day following your procedure and continue brushing at least twice a day.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Eat soft foods for the first several days after surgery. Advance to a regular diet as you become more comfortable. Please avoid chewing or creating pressure on the bone graft site. Please avoid drinking alcoholic beverages or smoking during the first one to two weeks following your surgery.
  • All removable appliances, including partial dentures, flippers and full dentures, must be checked for proper fit before they can be worn.
  • Swelling and bruising may occur. Applying a cold compress to the face near the surgical site will help minimize swelling. If using an ice pack, please do not apply ice directly to your skin but place a cloth between the ice and your skin at all times.  You may apply the cold compress for up to 20 minutes on and at least 20 minutes off as needed.
  • If you experience severe or persistent sinus or nasal congestion please let us know.