Post Op Instructions

TEETH WHITENING

Post-Op Instructions After In-Office Whitening or Take Home Kit Whitening

Sensitivity and soreness following whitening is very common. Your teeth may be especially sensitive to cold air and drinks and if any of the whitening agent gets on your gums, it may cause them to be tender. Sensitivity and soreness will gradually subside after a couple of days. If you are more prone to sensitivity, you may choose to use anti-sensitivity toothpaste before, during, and after whitening.

Try to avoid any darkly or reddish colored foods and beverages (red sauces, coffee, red wine, tea) and smoking for a few hours following whitening. This is when your teeth are most susceptible to absorbing new stain. To maintain your shade for as long as possible, avoid colorants (dark food and drinks, tobacco), use a whitening toothpaste, and have regular cleanings. You may need to use home whitening trays a few times a month to maintain your shade.

Tooth-colored fillings will not whiten. If the filling matches your current color, bleaching will result in miss-matched shades with your natural teeth. You may need to have your old fillings replaced to match your newly whitened teeth.

The best way to maintain your white teeth after in-office whitening will be to utilize a take home teeth whitening kit.
TAKE HOME TEETH WHITENING INSTRUCTIONS
While bleaching or whitening your teeth, normal oral hygiene measures should be followed (flossing and brushing).

Bead the bleaching gel into your custom tray, using caution not to overload the tray. Insert the tray into your mouth over teeth and gently wipe any excess gel from around the edges of your tray, taking extra care not to leave any gel on your gums. Irritated gums usually means you have used too much gel in your tray.

Wear the tray for one hour the first time; you may use the gel up to two hours, twice daily for seven days. I the sensitivity is too uncomfortable, stop and reduce time and/or frequency. Usually sensitivity stops after several days.

Do not rinse your mouth, since this may dilute the bleaching agent. Do not swallow the whitening gel. Never drink, eat, or smoke while wearing your tray. After completing the daily bleaching session, remove the tray and gently clean it with a toothbrush. Rinse it completely, and let dry thoroughly before the next session.

ROOT CANAL THERAPY
You can expect soreness after a root canal procedure for a few days. You should avoid chewing on the side of your mouth where the procedure was performed so you do not irritate the area. It is usually recommended to take ibuprofen as per instructed for the next 2 days (assuming you do not have an allergic reaction or issues with taking ibuprofen). If you notice an increasing amount of pain or tenderness, a reaction to the medication, or the loss of the temporary restoration (filling) call your dentist immediately.

CROWNS AND BRIDGES
Before you receive your permanent crown/bridge you will first receive a temporary restoration. This is not as sturdy as the permanent version, so you should be careful when cleaning and eating. You should brush the area gently and should not pull up on the tooth when flossing because it could become dislodged. The same goes for eating. You should avoid sticky or chewy foods while you have the temporary in.

There may be some sensitivity and irritation after the temporary or permanent is placed. This is normal and will subside after the soft tissue heals. A warm salt water rinse will help, and you can also take Advil or Tylenol if the pain does not go away.

If the temporary crown or bridge becomes dislodged, immediately call your dentist to have it re-cemented to avoid shifting of teeth, which can ultimately cause your permanent crown/bridge to NOT fit in.

When the permanent crown or bridge is placed it may feel a little awkward for a few days. Your mouth needs to adjust to the new tooth, and it should feel like one of your natural tooth in less than a week. If your bite feels abnormal in any way, you should let your dentist know. Caring for your bridge or crown is just like caring for your own teeth. You should brush and floss regularly.

WHITE FILLINGS
After the anesthesia wears off your teeth will likely be sensitive. You should avoid hot and cold food or drink for the next few days. After that initial period, your treated teeth will feel as good as new. If the cavity was deeper, sensitivity could last for months; however it should subside over time. Continue your normal hygiene plan to ensure that your fillings last for a long time.

SCALING AND ROOT PLANING
After this procedure your gums will probably be slightly sore and irritated for a few days. You should rinse your mouth with warm salt water (1 tsp salt/8 oz water) 2-3 times a day. This will relieve the pain and cleanse the area. Brushing and flossing should be continued right after the procedure, but you should brush gently so that you do not further irritate the area. If you experience any swelling or stiffness in the area you can place a cold compress on the area and take some pain relieving medicine. Avoid any hard or chewy foods for 2-3 days after the surgery to ensure the area heals correctly. If you continue to experience pain or swelling after a few days contact your dentist.

VENEERS
Before you receive your permanent veneer you will first receive a temporary restoration. This is not as sturdy as the permanent version, so you should be careful when cleaning and eating. You should brush the area gently and should not pull up on the tooth when flossing because it could become dislodged. The same goes for eating. You should avoid sticky or chewy foods while you have the temporary in.

There may be some sensitivity and irritation after the temporary or permanent is placed. This is normal and will subside after the soft tissue heals. A warm salt water rinse will help, and you can also take Advil or Tylenol if the pain does not go away.

When the veneer is placed it may feel a little awkward for a few days. Your mouth needs to adjust to the new tooth, and it should feel like one of your natural tooth in less than a week. If your bite feels abnormal in any way, you should let your dentist know. When brushing and flossing you should pay close attention to the area between the veneer and the tooth at the gum line.

EXTRACTIONS
It is important to follow instructions after you have oral surgery to ensure proper healing and to avoid complications. As a rule of thumb, you should always wait two hours after surgery before eating to let the anesthesia wear off. Trying to eat before this could result in soft tissue damage because you are not able to feel all of your mouth. The instructions found below are guidelines.

—Bleeding: It’s normal for the extraction site to bleed slightly or ooze blood for 12 to 24 hours following surgery.  After the surgery you will need to rest. Rest when you return home, but do not lie flat. This could prolong the bleeding.  Prop your head up on a pillow when lying down.

—Gauze Pack:  Fold the gauze into a small pack and place it over the site where the tooth was removed.  There should be firm pressure on site.  Keep firm biting pressure on the gauze for one to two hours. Change the pack every 15 to 30 minutes.  You can stop applying the gauze after 1 to 2 hours or when bleeding has stopped.

—Ice Pack:  For the first 2 to 8 hours after surgery, apply ice packs to the outside of the face over the area where the tooth was removed. Hold the ice pack in place for 15 minutes or so, and then remove it for 15 minutes.  This will help reduce discomfort and swelling.  Cover the ice pack with a think towel so the pack is not directly on your skin.

—Medications: Do NOT take any products with aspirin becasue they may increase bleeding.  In most cases, a pain medication without aspirin that’s available over the counter will give you sufficient pain relief.  Use any medicines or prescirptions as directed on the label.  If you have any bad side effects, stop taking the medications and call the office.  If you have a minor side allergic reaction, usually benadryl will take care of it.  If you have a serious side effect, seek medical care immediately.

—Diet: Drink plenty of water for the first day or two after surgery.  Avoid spitting and physical exercise. Do NOT use a straw because this will loosen up the blood clot and cause insufficient healing which may lead to increased pain.  The same goes for smoking. If you have prolonged pain, bleeding, irritation, or don’t feel that the extraction site is healing properly call your dentist for a follow up. You will be limited to soft foods for a few days after your surgery. Some recommended foods are: Gelatin, Pudding,Yogurt, Mashed Potatoes, Ice Cream, Soups, Smoothies, and other food you can eat without chewing

—Oral Hygiene: Clean your mouth as usual, but avoid the site where your tooth was removed.  Do not rinse or swish for the first 24 hours after surgery.

—Possible Problems: Be alert for:

Dry Socket: You might have a dry socket if you have constant moderate to severe pain, a bad taste, putrid odor, and poor clot formation at the extraction site.  If you have any of these symptoms, call the office immediately.

Fever. Check your temperature for the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery. Call the office if you have a temperature higher than normal (98.6˚F).

Swelling. You can expect to have some swelling during the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery.  If you have a lot of swelling or the selling continues after 48 hours, call the office.

 

If you have any additional questions, feel free to call us at (512) 579-0069!