Post Operative



  • You will experience local swelling and discomfort for 5-7 days following surgery.
  • Over the first 3 days you will notice your swelling and discomfort progressively increasing. THIS IS NORMAL and does not mean there is any cause for concern.
  • The sutures we use are soluble and do not require removal. You will be aware of them but they will not bother you.
  • Smoking can disrupt healing and is best avoided during the first 72 hours following surgery.
  • Do not operate machinery or drive a car for 24 hours following your surgery.
  • Do not gargle or swish your mouth for the first 24 hours following your surgery.
  • Should you feel dizzy or light headed you should lie down and rest. Keeping well hydrated will help prevent this problem.
  • You will leave the hospital with a prescription for antibiotics and/or analgesics (if required) and a list of postoperative instructions.


  • It is, of course, normal after any operation for there to be local pain during the initial healing phase: usually 3-7 days.
  • Factors such as your age, underlying medical conditions, and difficulty of the procedure can all play a role in the amount of discomfort that is experienced.
  • Over the counter analgesics can provide effective pain relief. We recommend for adult patients:

       -- 2 tablets of paracetamol (500mg. tablets) + 2 tablets of ibuprofen (200mg tablets) taken together every 4-6 hours with a glass of water. (Warning: Ibuprofen should not be taken by patients with a history of stomach ulcers or asthma)

  • We will also prescribe a stronger pain killer for you so that it is available to you, if needed. This tablet will contain codeine which, whilst helping reduce pain, can cause:

      -- nausea

      -- constipation

      -- drowsiness


  • It is normal for there to be some gentle oozing of blood from the surgical site for up to 12 hours following your operation.
  • If this is disturbing you, place a gauze pack (which will be provided to you in your take home kit) over the site and bite firmly down for 15 minutes. This local application of pressure will help settle the problem.

       -- Rest in bed with your head elevated 20-30 degrees (two pillows). 

       -- Avoid bending over.


  • You should avoid rinsing your mouth for the first 24 hours to prevent loss of your blood clots and possible formation of a “dry socket”.
  • We recommend gentle rinsing with warm salt water for the first 2 days, following which you can commence use of the curosept (provided to you in your take home kit) after each meal for 5-7 days.
  • There is no rule that says you should not brush your teeth. In fact, quite the opposite:

      - gentle brushing - avoiding your surgical sites - will help your healing and reduce the risk of infection.


• Persistent/Increasing swelling

• Temperature


  • Ice packs will be applied to your face immediately following your surgery.
  • This therapy can be continued at home with the refrigerant ice packs (provided in your take home kit), for the first 3 days.


  • Soft foods are recommended for 5 days: pasta, soup, eggs, smoothies, minute noodles, steamed fish, and vegetables, potato mash… (a patient once proudly informed me that he placed a pizza in a blender and added some Coca Cola!!! - Where there’s a will, there’s a way)
  • We advise a gradual return to normal foods after the first week.
  • Be aware: some limitation of opening after oral surgery is to be expected and self corrects after a week or so.