Post-Op Instructions

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. After your surgery the doctor or dental assistant will give you full instructions on how to properly recover from surgery.


Full Arch All-on-4 Implant Surgery

Post-operative care following an All-on-4 dental implant procedure is crucial for successful recovery and healing. While specific instructions may vary based on individual patient needs and the recommendations of the treating dental professional, here are general guidelines that are often provided as post-op instructions:

1. Oral Hygiene:
– Gently brush the teeth and gums, taking care to avoid the surgical areas, for the first few days after the procedure.
– Use an antimicrobial mouthwash as prescribed by the dentist to help keep the mouth clean and reduce the risk of infection.

2. Diet:
– Stick to a soft or liquid diet immediately following the surgery to avoid putting excessive pressure on the implants and surgical sites.
– Avoid hot and spicy foods as well as hard and crunchy foods that could irritate the surgical areas.

3. Activity:
– Rest and avoid strenuous physical activities for the first few days after the surgery to promote healing.

4. Medication:
– Take any prescribed medications, such as antibiotics or pain relievers, as directed by the dentist.
– Avoid consuming alcohol and smoking, as these can interfere with healing.

5. Swelling and Discomfort:
– Apply ice packs to the face over the surgical areas to help reduce swelling during the first 24 hours after the procedure.
– If prescribed, take pain medications as directed to manage any discomfort.

6. Follow-up:
– Attend all scheduled follow-up appointments with the dental professional to monitor the healing process and ensure the implants are integrating properly.

It’s important for patients to carefully follow the specific post-operative instructions provided by their dental professional and to contact their dentist if they have any concerns or experience unexpected symptoms during the recovery period.

Implant/Bone Grafting Post-Operative Instructions

For dental implant patients: a implant has been placed in your mouth. The implant may be located above or below the tissue. This type of implant has been selected for your situation because of the bone available to place an implant. The implant will usually take a period of four to six months to heal; depending upon your body’s healing ability and the type of implant surgery.

For bone graft patients: your bone graft is made up of many particles. You may find some small granules in your mouth over the first several days. Do not be alarmed by these. It is normal to have some of them come out of the graft site and into your mouth.

Avoid applying pressure with your tongue or fingers to the grafted area, as the material is movable during the initial healing period.

Do not lift or pull the lip to look at the sutures. This can actually cause damage to the wound site and tear the sutures.


Bite down firmly but gently on gauze. Make sure that the gauze remains in place, undisturbed for 30 minutes, and then reapply with clean gauze. You can also use a damp black tea bag in place of the gauze.
Slight bleeding is normal for up to 24 hours and can last longer if you are taking blood thinners. The blood will mix with saliva, so it is important to determine if there is active bleeding. The above instructions can be repeated, and then the gauze can be discontinued when the bleeding has subsided. No eating, drinking, or sleeping with gauze in your mouth.


Swelling is the body’s normal reaction to surgery and healing. The swelling will not reach its peak for 2-3 days. After this time, the swelling should decrease but may persist for 7-10 days. Swelling may be minimized by the immediate use of ice packs. Apply the ice pack to the outside of the face using a towel as a barrier for 20 minutes on and then 20 minutes off. You can also hold ice water or popsicles intraorally to help with your swelling.


Unfortunately, most oral surgery procedures are accompanied by some degree of discomfort. There are many good strategies to get you through the process, though. Some form of pain reliever should be taken before the numbness goes away. Over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin), acetaminophen (Tylenol), or aspirin are adequate if there are no allergies, they have been tolerated in the past, and they do not interfere with any other medications. For more involved procedures, a prescribed narcotic can be taken. The narcotic can also be alternated or taken in addition to ibuprofen if there are no allergies and has been tolerated in the past. Taking your medications with food will decrease the chance of nausea. Remember, narcotic pain medications will impair your judgment and reflexes, so driving and operating heavy machinery is to be avoided.
*NOTE: If you are taking PLAVIX or COUMADIN, do NOT take Ibuprofen or Aspirin products.


Although antibiotics may be prescribed to prevent an infection, a wound infection may occur several days after surgery. You may be suspicious of an infection if there is a sudden increase in swelling, throbbing pain, or a foul-tasting drainage from the wound. If you suspect infection, call the office as soon as possible.


Antibiotics are prescribed to treat or prevent infections, so take all of the medication as directed. Take the entire prescription until gone. If you experience any adverse reactions, such as nausea, rash, or itching, discontinue the medication. A rash or itching may indicate an allergic reaction to a medication. Antihistamines (Benadryl) will usually counteract the hives, rash, and itching. Swelling of the lips or tongue or difficulty breathing may represent a more severe allergic reaction, and you should seek medical attention immediately.


NO SMOKING! Smoking is to be avoided for the time specified by the doctor. Smoking increases the heat in the surgical site and significantly lowers the body’s ability to heal the site.


A nutritionally balanced diet is very important. During the first 24 hours, eat warm/room temperature blended soups and soft foods that are easily swallowed. Do not skip meals. Foods such as Jell-o, pudding, mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs and soups are suggested.  If your have difficulties, try blenderized foods such as Vitamix blender recipes, or diet supplements such as Carnation Instant Breakfast and Ensure.
By eating nutritious meals regularly, you will feel better, gain strength, have less discomfort, and heal faster.
Avoid the usage of straws as this may disturb the blood clot and/or promote bleeding.
Avoid carbonated drinks and hot liquids for 48 hours.

Oral Hygiene

Every consideration must be given to keep the surgical site clean and free of food particles.

The best way to prevent infection and ensure healing is to keep your mouth clean. Use saltwater rinses, mixing 1-2 tablespoons of salt into one cup of room temperature water.  No vigorous rinsing (using cheek muscles), hold saltwater over the surgical site and let it drool out of your mouth without spitting out the rinse. Do not spit because this action can disrupt the blood clot and/or promote bleeding.  Should bleeding resume repeat the use of gauze as described above.  Start rinses 24 hours from surgery. Do not rinse your mouth the day of surgery.

You may softly brush the adjacent tooth surfaces as long as the brush does not disturb the surgical site. You may take a clean Q-tip and go around the tooth near the surgical site to keep that tooth clean.


Keeping the head elevated with 2 pillows (45 degree angle) when lying down can minimize facial swelling. Remember to avoid sleeping on the side your surgery was performed.


For the first 48 hours you should rest and relax with no physical activity. After 48 hours, you may resume activity as tolerated.

Dry Socket

When a dry socket occurs, there is constant pain that radiates to other areas of the jaw, teeth, and ear. Symptoms of a dry socket will not occur until the third or fourth post-operative day, and it results from a loss of the blood clot in the socket. This is similar to a scab pulling off the skin. All the surrounding areas will look normal. If you do not have improvement after the first few days following the procedure, please call the office. A medicated dressing may need to be placed to resolve the discomfort.

Existing Denture or Flipper

If this applies to you. On the day of your surgery, you will be given specific instructions regarding when you should wear your denture or flipper. Leave denture or flipper out of your mouth until you are instructed to wear it. You may be prescribed an antibacterial rinse to soak your Prosthetic in.


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Olaru any time of day or night. He can be reached at 208-699-5311

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