Composite Filling Post-op Instructions
The filling is fully set and ready to eat on when you leave the office. However, if you are numb, please wait until that fully wears off to avoid chewing your cheek or burning your tongue on food or drink that is hot.
It is normal to be a little tender if you had anesthetic near the injection site.
If the filling was placed near your gums, they can be tender as well. Warm salt water rinses (1/2 teaspoon in 1 cup of warm water) can help with this tenderness.
Cold sensitivity is common for a few days, even weeks following your filling. Typically, the deeper the cavity, the more sensitive the tooth will be. Long-lasting or lingering cold sensitivity can be concerning as the tooth is having a harder time recovering.
It can take time to acclimate to your new bite. If three days after your appointment your bite still does not feel back to normal, please call our office as we may need to adjust your bite.
Crown and Bridge Post-op Instructions
Avoid hard, chewy, or sticky foods. Do NOT chew gum or eat sticky candy.
If your temporary crown is in the front of your mouth, avoid biting into foods. Cut your food up and chew with your back teeth.
Brush the area normally.
When flossing, floss towards the gums and then SLIDE the floss through and out the cheek side of the tooth.
Avoid using a Waterpik around your temporary crown.
If anesthetic was used, your lips, cheek, teeth, or tongue may be numb for several hours after the appointment.
Please do not chew until the numbness has completely worn off to avoid biting your tongue or lips.
Please do not drink or eat anything hot or warm until the numbness has completely worn off to avoid burning your tongue. It is normal to be sore at the site of the injection for several days.
Your provisional crown will feel different than your natural tooth and permanent crown.
It is normal to have some cold sensitivity with your temporary; if it is severe, please call our office.
If your provisional crown comes off (as it is only cemented with temporary cement), please call our office; the provisional crown is very important for the final fitting of your permanent crown.
It is normal to experience some soreness at the injection site, gums, and sensitivity to temperature.
Your temporary crown is made of plastic and may feel rough to your tongue.
Rinsing with warm salt water (½ teaspoon of salt with 1 cup of warm water) will help with gum tenderness.
Your Next Appointment
The next appointment to seat your permanent crown lasts about 30 minutes.
Typically we will not use anesthetic during this appointment as it allows you to fully evaluate your bite. Some patients may have some sensitivity when the temporary is removed.
Root Canal Post-Op Instructions
Continue to brush and floss normally, unless you have a temporary crown; in that case, floss by flossing down towards the gums and pull the floss through the teeth).
For further cleaning around the tooth, rinse three times a day with warm salt water: dissolve a teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water, then rinse, swish, and spit.
If you have a temporary crown in place:
- Avoid chewing sticky foods
- Avoid biting hards foods
Usually, the last step of root canal treatment is the placement of the crown. A crown covers and protects the tooth from breaking in the future.
Unless otherwise noted by Dr. Sonntag, it is critical to have a crown placed on your root-canal-treated tooth as soon as possible.
If your bite feels uneven a day or two after your appointment, please call our office as soon as possible.
We recommend taking over-the-counter pain medication such as:
- Ibuprofen, 600 mg (Motrin, Advil, Nuprin)
- Acetaminophen, 325 mg (Tylenol)
Ibuprofen is an NSAID and will help with inflammation. If this alone is not enough (taken every 6 hours), add in Tylenol with your NSAID dose.
If antibiotics are prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length of time, even if all symptoms and signs of infection are gone.
It is normal to experience some discomfort for several days after a root canal therapy appointment, especially when chewing.
A tooth like this may even have a dull ache immediately after your appointment.
Every person and every tooth is different, but these sensations should subside within days (or even weeks).
You may have not been experiencing any discomfort prior to therapy but you may after treatment. This tenderness is normal and part of the healing process.
Oral Surgery Post-Op Instructions
Avoid vigorous chewing, excessive spitting, or rinsing for the first 24 hours.
Avoid using a straw.
Try to avoid smoking entirely, if possible.
Your sutures (if needed) are resorbable and will start to come out on their own.
- 24 hours after surgery, you can use warm salt water rinses (1/2 teaspoon in a small cup of water). Repeat 3 times a day for 1 week.
- Brush your teeth the day after the surgery, trying to avoid irritating the surgical area.
Expect minor bleeding or oozing from the operative site. The bleeding may continue throughout the first day. Place firm pressure on the surgical site with the provided sterile gauze for 30 minutes at a time until the bleeding subsides.
Once oozing has subsided, avoid placing the gauze as this can lead to further bleeding and discomfort.
If bleeding continues, using a wet tea bag at the site may help control persistent oozing.
It is not uncommon to feel some level of discomfort after having an extraction, especially as the numbness subsides.
We recommend you take an NSAID (Advil/Ibuprofen) as directed. If you are unable to take anti-inflammatory medications, Tylenol/acetaminophen should be taken as directed.
- 600 mg of ibuprofen
- 325 mg or 500 mg acetaminophen
Do not wait for the pain to become unbearable before using some form of pain medication, as it will be more difficult to control. Moderate to severe pain usually does not last longer than 24-72 hours.
Swelling often peaks 72 hours after the day of the surgery.
Utilize cold compresses at 30-minute intervals for the first 48 hours post-surgery.
Utilize moist heat after the first 48 hours.
Take any regularly scheduled medications unless advised otherwise.
If you feel your healing is not progressing in a normal fashion, please reach out to our office.
Please avoid any hot drinks or foods until your numbness has subsided.
Please stay hydrated.
Please limit your activity for the first 24-48 hours after your surgery.
When you lie down, keep your head slightly elevated (at a 45-degree angle).
Do not drive if you are taking prescription pain medication.
Dentures and Partial Dentures
New dentures require a period of adjustment. Speech may be altered, and
may require acclimation of the tongue.
Reading out loud will help navigate your tongue and pallet placement.
Removing your denture in the evening allows your tissue to rest!
Sore spots are normal with a new denture. Oftentimes, follow-up appointments are needed to relieve these areas.
Wearing your denture for 24 hours prior to your dental appointment will assist us in locating these areas of concern.
Proper cleaning of your denture is important to remove the bacterial and yeast build-up.
- Remove denture and place in a cupd of warm water with denture cleaning tablet (ex. Efferdent, Polydent).
- Keep the denture in solution for at least 3 minutes but overnight is ideal.
- Rinse denture thoroughly and brush WITHOUT toothpaste.
Your Next Appointment
Follow up visits to address your new bite or any sore spots are common initially. We want to do our best to make sure you are comfortable and functioning well!
Yearly exams to evaluate your oral tissues, back of your throat, head and neck lymph nodes and muscles are critical to your oral health.
Night Guards and Retainers
- Store in a dry container.
- After using, rinse and brush with warm soapy water.
- DO NOT soak or place in direct sunlight.
Scaling and Root Planing
Avoid eating anything that needs to be chewed while you are still numb. The numbness usually wears off within the first several hours, but there is always a possibility of lingering numbness.
Avoid foods that are very crunchy for the next few days such as hard pretzels or tortilla chips.
You may rinse with warm salt water two to three times a day for the next few days. Use one teaspoon of salt in eight ounces of water.
Please try to avoid smoking in the day or two that follow the treatment as it dalys healing of your gum tissues.
Once the numbness wears off, you may have some slight discomfort.
You are able to take pain relievers such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and acetaminophen (Tylenol) as needed for the day following the procedure. Please take a pain reliever you would normally use for pain relief.
If you have persistent discomfort or swelling that occurs, contact the office.
Resume your normal homecare routine but be more gentle in the area that was treated.
If you use a waterpik, you may need to turn the pressure down for the first two days or so.
Your Next Appointment
After the scaling treatment is complete, we will see you back in the office in six to eight weeks to reevaluate the areas that were treated.
*Not all patients who have had scaling and root planing will have direct antibiotic placement (Arestin) but for those who have:
- For one week post placement:
- Do not touch sites treated
- Do not chew hard, crunchy, or sticky foods (ex. carrots, taffy, gum).
For ten days post placement
- Do not floss or use other tools to clean between the treated teeth.
- Mild to moderate sensitivity is normal.