Surgical Instructions

It may be important to stop taking aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, such as Motrin and Advil, seven to 10 days prior to your surgery. If you are taking Coumadin or another blood thinner, remember to discontinue them as directed. If you take antibiotic premedication, please take it as directed before your surgery. You will feel better if you have eaten prior to surgery. We keep the office cool, so dress warmly. You may bring your music player with you if you would like.

In order to evaluate your progress and healing, we will see you approximately seven to 14 days after your surgery, and then again two to four weeks later. In most cases, we will also look forward to seeing you back for a periodontal maintenance cleaning and an examination of tissue maturation about 10 to 12 weeks following the surgery.


Please alert the office to any allergies or sensitivities that you might have to antibiotics. You will be prescribed an antibiotic if we determine it to be necessary.

Oral Sedation

If you are undergoing oral sedation, you must have a ride to and from our office. Please bring your remaining prescribed tablets with you. You may or may not eat before the procedure, but the sedatives will be more effective if you do not.

  • Ativan (Lorazepam)
  • Valium (Diazepam)
  • Triazalam (Halcion)

IV Sedation

If you elect IV sedation, remember to fast for eight hours prior to your appointment.

Postoperative Food Suggestions

When preparing a postoperative menu, please consider some of the following choices:

  • Jell-O
  • Bananas
  • Yogurt
  • Pasta
  • Milkshakes
  • Casseroles
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Ensure®/SlimFast
  • Soups
  • Pudding
  • Rice
  • Apple Sauce
  • Oatmeal
  • Macaroni and Cheese
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Cottage Cheese

Postoperative Instructions

These instructions apply to the surgical procedure just completed. They are designed to help you minimize postsurgical discomfort and inform you of any situation that may require special attention.

Pain Medications

It is not unusual to have discomfort for at least the first week following your surgical procedure. The majority of post-operative pain is effectively controlled with over-the counter ibuprofen and TYLENOL®. The following dosages are recommended: 600mg ibuprofen (3 x 200mg tablets) and 500mg TYLENOL (1 x 500mg tablet) every six hours as needed. Our periodontists may recommend a different combination depending on your individual circumstances.

For more involved surgical procedures, prescription pain medication may be prescribed to help with any post-treatment discomfort. Please take your medications as directed. It is advisable to not take pain medication on an empty stomach, as nausea may result.

Note: When taking any prescribed medication containing acetaminophen (TYLENOL), e.g., Percocet, Hydrocodone, Vicodin or TYLENOL with Codeine, you should not take additional TYLENOL so as not to exceed the safety level of acetaminophen. Please contact the office with any questions you may have.


An antibiotic may be prescribed following your surgical procedure. Take as directed until gone. It is advisable not to take these medications on an empty stomach, as nausea may result. For women taking birth control pills, be advised that some antibiotics may interfere with their effectiveness.


Swelling may occur following your surgical procedure and will typically increase two to three days after the procedure. To minimize the swelling, place an ice pack over the outside cheek area for 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off. Continue using ice for two to three days following the procedure as often as possible.


A small amount of bleeding is normal. If excessive or continuous bleeding occurs:

  • Do not rinse your mouth.
  • Elevate your head when lying down.
  • Apply moistened gauze to the immediate area with moderate pressure for 20 minutes, repeat if necessary.
  • Enclose a moistened tea bag in a gauze square and apply pressure for 20 minutes.
  • Call the office if bleeding persists.


The dressing (which acts as a bandage) may or not be used to protect the surgical site and help reduce discomfort. If the dressing comes off or is uncomfortable, please call the office for direction.


Until comfortable, avoid chewing on the side where surgery was completed. Avoid hot foods and liquids for approximately one hour following the surgery so as not to soften the dressing. A soft diet is recommended. Foods such as cottage cheese, oatmeal, soup, eggs, yogurt, pasta, mashed potatoes, casseroles and fruits are more easily eaten. Remember, adequate nutrition is essential for feeling better as well as for healing.


It is advised not smoke for at least two weeks following your surgical procedure. It will significantly slow healing and can compromise results.


You should not drink alcohol while taking prescription pain medications.


Do not rinse for the first 24 hours. A prescription mouthwash may be given to you to use depending on your procedure. You may use a mild, diluted mouthwash after 24 hours unless instructed otherwise.


Do not brush the surgical site. You may resume normal brushing/flossing in other areas the following day.

Suture Removal

We will remove any remaining sutures at your postoperative appointment approximately seven to 14 days after your surgical procedure. We often use resorbable sutures, which do not need to be removed. If these sutures are used, we will still need to see you in seven to 14 days to check the healing. If resorbable sutures are not used, we will ask that you return for their removal.

Should you have any questions or concerns during regular office hours, please do not hesitate to contact us at 336-379-8377 or email us at