Relieving Pain after Oral Surgery


Oral surgery typically produces a minimal level of discomfort; however, in some extensive extraction or surgical procedures, your recovery may involve a brief period of pain. There are many ways to help ease your discomfort and to speed up your recovery time. Below are a few helpful suggestions for preventing and relieving your oral surgery pain.

Preventive Steps before Surgery

To minimize trauma and pain, doctors recommend taking good care of yourself in the days leading up to surgery. Eat well, get enough rest and drink lots of water. The day before your procedure, take it as easy as possible and avoid strenuous exercise. Let your doctor know if you develop any type of illness or infection prior to the procedure, as they may choose to delay it until you can be evaluated and treated.

If you have been prescribed any pre-surgery medication, take it as prescribed. Most doctors advise that you discontinue all vitamins and supplements for two weeks prior to surgery, but check with your surgeon about taking vitamin C. The Academy of General Dentistry recommends ascorbic acid to expedite healing and reduce pain.* Finally, if you have been told to discontinue foods or liquids the night before, follow these instructions exactly or you risk having to reschedule the procedure.

On the Day of Surgery

If you take regular medications, check with your doctor as to whether you should take them the day of surgery. Some prescription and over-the-counter drugs act as blood thinners, which may complicate your procedure and cause unnecessary pain and discomfort. Once you have been released to go home, plan to take it easy at least until the next day. If you wish to lie down, keep your head elevated to reduce pain and pressure. Use ice packs to reduce the swelling and pain, and take any prescribed medication to prevent infection. Don’t brush your teeth or use harsh rinses unless you have been advised to do so, although gently rinsing with warm saltwater will help keep your incisions clean.

General Recovery Tips to Minimize Pain

Your doctor will provide you with aftercare instructions designed to minimize pain and reduce the chance of complications or infection. Avoid heavy lifting or straining for several days. Eat soft foods, but maintain a balanced diet that is rich in vitamins A and C. Drink lots of fluids, but avoid drinking through straws for several days. Avoid hot liquids or foods as well as alcohol and nicotine. Your doctor may have prescribed pain medication, but in most cases, over-the-counter analgesics will be sufficient to control your discomfort as long as you follow recovery instructions. If you develop any sudden or extreme pain, bleeding or fever, contact your doctor immediately.

Here at Capital Oral & Facial Surgery we understand that oral surgery can be painful. We will work with you to ensure that your procedure and aftercare are as pain-free as possible. Contact us today for any questions you have regarding oral surgery.

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