You need to take care of yourself. Your body has been subjected to stress from anesthesia, surgery, and some bleeding. By following a few tips of self-care, your recovery can be speedy and more comfortable.
What can I eat?
Everything that you eat or drink for the first 24 hours should be cool or cold. Heat would increase both bleeding and swelling. Your body needs to heal and repair itself now so good nutrition is more important than ever. Make sure you get extra protein and vitamins. Besides meat, other protein sources are peanut butter, eggs, legumes (beans), and milk shakes. Vitamin supplements are encouraged. Carnation instant breakfast is good as well as a canned product called Ensure. Carbonated beverages should be avoided for 24 hours. Cigarette smoke will definitely retard healing and is more likely to result in a dry socket
How Do I Keep It Clean?
Like any wound, the cleaner it is kept the better, the faster it will heal. If teeth are near the surgery area you can begin gently brushing the area with a soft brush the very next day. The mouth should be rinsed 3-4 times a day with warm salt water the next day also (1/2 teaspoon salt in a cup of water). You may brush the area, this is OK just be gentle. If no teeth are present, the gums should be cared for in a similar manner, even using a soft brush.
What About Bleeding?
Slight oozing is to be expected for the first 24 hours. If you feel the oozing is excessive, the first thing to do is rinse with cool water and try to identify exactly where it is coming from. Then place a piece of gauze or cloth over the site and apply direct, firm pressure (either by biting or holding your finger ott it) for a full five minutes without letting up. Sometimes a moist tea bag works well for this. If you feel the bleeding remains excessive call the office.
What About Discomfort?
if you were given a prescription please use it as directed. It is much better to control pain before it becomes intense rather than waiting until you are hurting badly and.then trying to overcome it. However, you should wean yourself off of the prescription medication and on to an aspirin, tylenol, or ibuprofen product as quickly as possible. It is common to feel like you have a bruise for a few days and your jaw may feel stiff to try to open for a few days. If the pain is severe please call the office. If you felt OK then 2-4 days later started having discomfort, you may be developing what is called a dry socket and you should be seen to have a medicated dressing placed.
Purchase these items at the drug store
- Denture toothbrush
- Denture toothpaste
- Denture adhesive
- RX Analgesic Cream (Butyn or Benzodent)
- RX Neosporin ointment
Until sutures are removed (one week):
- Must not remove dentures from mouth for 24 hours.
- Rinse with one-half (1/2) Hydrogen Peroxide and 1/2 water to clean .around stitches.
- Brush dentures with denture brush and paste inside and outside.
- Hold denture over sink full of water so it will not break if dropped.
- Before replacing the denture, coat the inside with Neosporin and Analgesic creams as needed.
- Be sure to finish all antibiotics.
- Take pain medication when needed. Do not mix with Alcohol.
- Eat to maintain proper protein and vitamin level. We recommend dietary supplement like Carnation Instant Breakfast or “Ensure”. (Available at most drugstores.)
After Suture Removal:
- Doctor will adjust sore spots at suture removal appointment.
- Continue using Neosporin and Analgesic cream as needed.
- If a sore spot makes the appliance too sore to wear, leave it out, and make an appointment, ASAP, and put appliance back in when you come to office.
- Experiment with different foods to see what type of food you can or cannot eat comfortably.
- Most patients cannot bite very well with the new denture for several weeks until the gums toughen.
- As gums heal the plates will loosen; use adhesive as needed.
- It will take 6 months of healing before a reline can be done that will be stable..
Remember: Learning to Wear a Prosthesis is 10% Physical and 90% Mental
We hope your recovery is uneventful. It has been a pleasure to serve you. Your comfort is important to us, so please do not hesitate to call if you have any questions.