Bone Graft Aftercare Instructions

Aftercare Instructions: Tooth Extraction With Bone Graft Socket Preservation

Killingly Dental Care

With proper bone grafting aftercare, Killingly Dental Care patients can help grafts grow strongly within the surrounding jawbone. It’s this process that fortifies the bone, creates a more stable platform for tooth restorations, and returns form and function to the smile.

The full bonding process can take 2-4 months, but your recovery from surgery should only be a few days. After bone grafting, you can expect about a 4-7 day recuperation with limited activity (do not elevate heart rate/blood pressure) on Day 1, Day 2, Day 3. You may be able to return to your regular schedule by Day 4, though this depends on how quickly your body heals, your tolerance for discomfort, and how physically demanding your typical day is.

Stitches and Bandages

Your doctor may apply stitches to help you heal more quickly. These stitches are usually absorbable, which means that they will dissolve on their own within 3-5 days.

You may notice some loose bone grafting material around the site as it heals. This material has a soft and grainy texture, and it’s perfectly normal if some of the graft works its way out of the stitches. The connective tissue membrane that helps the healing process is a white color and may rise or change shape, this is normal, avoid touching this material. Do not pull on your cheek to look at the site as this can disrupt optimal healing.

After your surgery, your doctor will provide you with gauze sponges you can use to manage bleeding. Change the gauze every 15 minutes for about two hours or until the bleeding has stopped. You may continue to have a small amount of bleeding for the first 24 hours after surgery.

PAIN CONTROL: During your surgery, you were given a local anesthetic to numb the surgical site. As this anesthetic wears off, you may begin to experience some discomfort. The most severe pain usually occurs within 6 hours after surgery after that, your pain should lessen. Ibuprofen will be your best aid in pain management—if it is taken as directed on the bottle!

Take 600mg ibuprofen (three 200 milligram tablets/caplets = 600 milligrams) every six (6) hours.

This dose should be taken by the clock, every six hours, for three days. If you take the ibuprofen before the anesthesia wears off, you will have better success in managing any discomfort. Taking the ibuprofen on this six hour schedule will help to control swelling and decrease any jaw discomfort from being open during a long procedure. Jaw pain can persist with radiating discomfort for days after surgery, avoid checking sticky/chewy/crunch food for a few days to give your jaw a break.

ANTIBIOTIC: Please take the remaining portion of your antibiotic as instructed. Finish the bottle’s dose even if you’re feeling great.

SWELLING: Swelling can be minimized by using a cold pack, an ice bag or bag of frozen peas wrapped in a towel and firmly applied to the cheek adjacent to the surgical area. This should be applied 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off during the first 24 hours after surgery.

DIET: It is important not to skip any meals. If you take nourishment regularly you will feel better, gain strength, have less discomfort and heal faster. Liquids, including broths and soups, or pureed foods may be the most comfortable to begin with, but you may gradually progress to more solid foods over the next few days. Do not eat solid foods that will compress the grafted area or cause irritation to your jaw joint.

HYGIENE AND CARE: Do not disturb the surgical area. You may brush your teeth except in areas adjacent to your surgery. Use a warm salt-water rinse to soothe your mouth and keep it clean: Dissolve 1/4tsp to 1tsp in 8oz warm water, and gently move it around your mouth and allow it to dribble out. Take about 5 minutes and use the entire glass, taking care neither to vigorously rinse, nor spit. You may repeat the rinse as often as desired, but no less than 2-3 times daily.

SMOKING. Smoking increases infection rates, is very detrimental to healing, and has been proven to increase bone graft and implant failure rates by at least 15%.

HEALING: Individual bodies are different, so allow some room for your own unique healing ability. Otherwise, normal healing after an implant generally occurs as follows:

Day 1-5 - The day of surgery and the next day are generally the most uncomfortable, and there is usually some swelling. Avoid movements which will stretch this tissue, such as opening your mouth wide or smiling. Do not compress the gum tissue as this will interrupt adequate blood flow which promotes the proper healing of your surgical site. Your jaw will most likely be sore from being open during a long procedure.

The remainder of the post-operative course should be gradual, steady improvement. If you don’t see continued improvement, please call our office.

If gauze was placed in your mouth please remove prior to sleeping.

Thank you for choosing Killingly Dental Care to provide you with optimal dental and overall wellness!

(860) 779-1053

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