Post Op Instructions

Post Op Instructions for Extractions

After your extraction has been completed at Draper Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, one of the assistants will go over your post op instructions with you, and will answer any questions you may have.  You will also receive a paper with these post op instructions printed on it, however, we are posting these instructions on our website for easy access if you have a question after you get home.


Following your procedure, bleeding will occur.  Gauze will be placed over the extraction socket, and you will be instructed to apply pressure on this gauze by biting down.  Most of your bleeding will be controlled before you are allowed to leave the office. However, if you still have bleeding when you get home, place a new gauze over the extraction socket and apply pressure – change this gauze every 30 minutes until your bleeding has stopped.

Be sure to rest and take it easy for the rest of the day, and keep your head elevated to ensure blood clot formation

Blood tinged saliva is normal for 2-3 days following ext.

If bleeding is excessive or does not seem to be controlled, please contact our office at (704-982-2216 DURING NORMAL BUSINESS HOURS AND ER PHONE AFTER HOURS)


Swelling is a normal reaction to surgery and healing, and will peak 2-3 days post op, and may persist for 7-10 days.

Minimize swelling by using ice – 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off for the first 24hrs


Discomfort is to be expected to some degree after any surgery, including dental extractions.

If you are able to take NSAIDs, it is recommended to take this before the local anesthetic has worn off – or as soon as you get home.  NSAIDS include ibuprofen, naproxen, or aspirin.

A narcotic pain prescription may be written for you if the doctor feels you may need it.  Do not drive or operate any machinery while on this type of medication.  Do not take Tylenol (acetaminophen) in addition to your narcotic medication, as this medication already has Tylenol in it.

For the best pain relief, alternate the narcotic pain medication and ibuprofen.  You can take up to 800mgs of ibuprofen every six hours.

Please do NOT take a blood thinner such as coumadin or Plavix without speaking to your cardiologist/primary care doctor.

Oral Hygiene

Clean mouth after every meal, starting the day after surgery

No vigorous spitting or swishing for the first 2-3 days


  • Eat only soft foods for the first 2-3 days and gradually return to your normal diet.
  • Be sure to not bite your lip or tongue while you are numb

Foods to Avoid After Extraction

Nuts, sunflower seeds, popcorn, chips, or any food that may get lodged in socket areas.

Dry Socket

A dry socket may occur if the blood clot from the socket is lost.  This can cause pain that radiates to the ear, jaw or other teeth.

Call the office if there is no improvement in symptoms after the first few days.

To Prevent A Dry Socket From Occurring, Please Avoid:

  • Vigorous rinsing
  • Sucking on a straw
  • Smoking and/or tobacco use
  • Spitting
  • Exercise for at least 2-3 days post op

When To Call Our Office:

  • Fever >100.4 degrees F
  • Pain not relieved by pain medication
  • Swelling in floor of mouth or under chin, or excessive swelling at the extraction site

If you have any questions about the post op  instructions, please call our office at 704-982-2216 during normal business hours, and ER line after hours.

What To Expect On Your First Visit

At your first visit with us at Draper Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, a full comprehensive exam will be completed.  Necessary X-rays will be taken to ensure the best treatment plan can be created.  One of our amazing hygienists, Miss Liz, or Deborah will discuss your expectations for treatment, and what, if any, issues you are having.  They will go over your medical history and any medications you are taking, so please be sure to bring these to your appointment. Having a correct medical history is vitally important for us to make sure you are getting the best dental treatment available.

If possible, a dental cleaning will be completed at this appointment as well.  Depending on how long it has been since your last cleaning, you may need to return for a deep cleaning, known as Scaling and Root planing.  Measurements of your bone level and clinical attachment of your gum tissue, will help us determine what type of cleaning you may need.  At the end of your appointment, Dr. Draper will do a thorough examination of every tooth, and will complete an oral cancer screening.

A treatment plan will be created using all of the information that was gathered at your appointment.  Dr. Draper will discuss this treatment plan with you in detail and answer any and all questions you may have.  At Draper Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, we strive to provide quality dentistry in a fun and stress free environment.

We are excited you’ve chosen us as your dental healthcare provider and look forward to establishing a long term relationship with you and your family.

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