After extraction of a single tooth or multiple teeth

Dear Patients and Care-givers,

Following these instructions will provide the best chance possible for your mouth to begin healing properly, with the least amount of discomfort. Keep in mind that each patient is an individual and will experience different levels of discomfort. If at any time, you feel that something you are experiencing is not normal, or you have questions, please feel free to contact our office.

Dr. Craig Neal
Dr. Galia Leonard
Dr. Kyle Sorensen


After surgery, it is normal to have some oozing of blood in the surgical area. Keep firm, continuous pressure on the gauze throughout the day. Change the gauze once every hour, only while the bleeding continues. Once the bleeding has stopped, discontinue use of the gauze. Be sure to remove your gauze before you eat or drink, and then replace it with fresh gauze when you’re finished. The bleeding should be well controlled at the end of the first day. If you have uncontrolled bleeding or heavy bleeding beyond the first day, please contact our office.


Taking the medication that your doctor has prescribed for you will help you to effectively manage any discomfort you may experience. Please follow the directions on your prescription bottle and call our office if you have any questions. Keep in mind that taking your medications before your local anesthetic wears off will help you to manage your discomfort more easily. It is important for you to have something to eat before you take any kind of medication. This will help to minimize the occurrence of nausea or vomiting.


As soon as you leave the office, you may begin to eat soft foods. It is a good idea to eat something when you get home so you can begin to take your prescribed medications. We recommend things like milkshakes, fruit juices, mashed potatoes, soups, and soft pasta. Avoid small, hard foods such as popcorn, granola, and nuts, which may become lodged in the surgical site. Drink plenty of fluids to help avoid dehydration.

Ice Packs

Apply an ice pack to the outside of your face over the surgical area to help reduce swelling. Begin using ice packs as soon as you get home. Apply the ice pack for 15 minutes, followed by a 15 minute rest. Continue this for the first 24 hours, as much as possible, while you’re awake. Its normal for swelling to continue to increase for the first 2-3 days following surgery. Keeping your head elevated while resting and sleeping will also decrease swelling.


You may or may not have stitches in the surgical site. If you do, our surgical staff will inform you before you are released from our office. Usually, they will be the dissolving g type of suture that will break down and fall out themselves within the first 7-10 days following surgery.


About 24 hours after surgery, start to rinse your mouth gently with warm salt water. Use teaspoon salt dissolved in a glass of very warm water. Rinse several times daily, including after each time you eat. Brush very gently around areas where incisions have been made or stitches have been placed. Brush the rest of your mouth thoroughly in your regular manner. Avoid mouthwash that contains alcohol. During the healing phase, salt water is most effective.


Resting and avoiding strenuous activity for the first 2-3 days following surgery will allow your body to heal more quickly and will minimize swelling.