Wisdom Teeth

The after-effects of oral surgery vary per individual, so not all of these instructions may apply. Please feel free to call our office any time should you have any questions, or are experiencing any unusual symptoms following your treatment.


IMMEDIATELY AFTER SURGERY Patients who received a general anesthetic should return home from the office immediately upon discharge, and lie down with the head elevated until all the effects of the anesthetic have disappeared. Anesthetic effects vary by individual, and you may feel drowsy for a short period of time or for several hours. You should not operate any mechanical equipment or drive a motor vehicle for at least 12 hours or longer if you feel any residual effect from the anesthetic.

ORAL HYGIENE AND CARE Do not disturb the surgical area today. Bite down gently but firmly on the gauze pack that we have initially placed over the surgical area, making sure that they remain in place. Do not change them for the first half-hour unless the bleeding is not being controlled. This is important to allow blood clot formation on the surgery site. The gauze may be changed when necessary and/or repositioned for comfort. DO NOT drink with a straw and DO NOT rinse or brush your teeth vigorously or probe the area with the tongue, any objects or your fingers. You may brush your teeth gently, carefully avoiding the surgical site. DO NOT SMOKE for at least 48 hours, since it is detrimental to the healing process.

BLEEDING Some bleeding is normal, and blood-tinged saliva may be present for 24 hours. Slight oozing of the wounds does not require gauze compression.

STEADY BLEEDING Bleeding should not be severe. If bleeding persists, this may due to the gauze pads being clenched between the teeth rather than exerting pressure on the surgery site. Try repositioning the gauze. If bleeding persists or becomes heavy, substitute a moist tea bag (first soaked in hot water, squeezed dry and wrapped in a moist gauze) on the area for 20-30 minutes. If bleeding continues, please call our office.

SWELLING OR BRUISING Swelling is to be expected, and usually reaches its maximum in 48 hours. To minimize swelling, cold packs or ice bag wrapped in a towel should be applied to the face adjacent to the surgical area. This should be applied 20 minutes every other hour during the first 24-48 hours after surgery.

DIET Eat any nourishing food that can be taken with comfort. It is advisable to confine the first day’s food intake to bland liquids or pureed or soft foods. Avoid foods like nuts, sunflower seeds or popcorn, which may get lodged in the socket areas. Over the next several days, you may progress to more solid foods. Proper nourishment aids in the healing process. If you are a diabetic, maintain your normal diet as much as possible and follow your physician’s instructions regarding your insulin schedule.

PAIN AND MEDICATIONS Unfortunately, most oral surgery is accompanied by some degree of discomfort. Take the pain medication prescribed as directed. The local anesthetic administered with the general anesthetic during your surgery normally has a 3-hour duration, and it may be difficult to control the pain once the anesthetic wears off. We therefore, advise you to take the pain medication 2 hours immediately after your surgery. Taking the pain medication with soft food and a large volume of water will lessen any side effects of nausea or stomach upset.


ORAL HYGIENE Keeping your mouth clean after oral surgery is essential. 48 hours after surgery you should rinse your mouth with warm salt water (1/2 tsp. salt with 1 cup water) at least 3-4 times daily for the next five days. Begin your normal tooth brushing routine as soon as possible after surgery. Soreness and swelling may prevent rigorous brushing of all areas, but make every effort to clean your teeth within your comfort level.

CARE OF SURGICAL AREA After 48 hours, it is usually best to switch from using the cold pack to applying moist heat to the same area, until swelling has receded. Apply warm compresses to the skin overlying areas of swelling for 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off to help soothe these tender areas. This will also aid in reducing swelling and stiffness Bruising may also occur, but should disappear soon. Tightness of the jaw muscles may cause difficulty in opening the mouth. This should disappear within 7 days. Keep lips moist with cream or Vaseline to prevent cracking or chapping


If the tooth was positioned close to the nerve in the bone you may experience some tingling sensation or numbness in your lip which may last for several days or even months. The symptoms are rarely permanent.

Sometimes especially with lower wisdom tooth extractions the clot may be lost causing what is referred to as a Dry Socket. Due to loss of the clot the bone is exposed which can be quite painful. It is very important to follow the post-operative directions in order to prevent a dry socket or food lodging in the wounds. In such as call our office and you will be seen. Our office will place a medicated dressing in the exposed socket which will help control the pain.

It is our desire that your recovery be as pleasant and uneventful as possible. If you have any questions about your progress or any symptoms you are experiencing, please call our office at (707) 451-1311. After office hours, you may call our service and our doctor will contact you as soon as possible.

Office Hours

Monday 8:30 AM 5:00 PM
Tuesday 8:30 AM 5:00 PM
Wednesday 8:30 AM 5:00 PM
Thursday 8:30 AM 5:00 PM
Friday 8:00 AM 2:00 PM
Saturday Closed Except Emergencies
Sunday Closed Except Emergencies

Our Address

Dr. Sam F. Khoury
3000 Alamo Drive, Suite 206,
Vacaville, California 95687



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