What to Expect
We take pride in making your experience at the Meyer Clinic as pleasant, and comfortable as possible. It is our goal to have you feel secure in the treatment of your oral and facial needs. Local and general anesthesia are used to help to block the sensation of pain during any surgical procedure.
During a local anesthetic procedure, you are awake and aware of all of your surroundings. Dr. Bukzin or Dr. Friend and the staff of Meyer Clinic will keep you comfortable and will explain what is occurring while you are in their care.
During a general anesthetic procedure, you are asleep or in an altered state of consciousness. You are given medications to induce a short nap. This medication is metabolized quickly; therefore, you wake up soon after your procedure is complete. You may feel drowsy and will need a little bit of help throughout the rest of your day.
Dr. Bukzin or Dr. Friend and the staff at the Meyer Clinic will discuss with you the appropriate anesthesia for your procedure. They will recommend what they believe to be the best form of anesthesia for your procedure and situation. Please follow the directions below related to the type of anesthesia you will be undergoing. We look forward to seeing you soon.
General Anesthesia (GA)
General anesthesia is a common procedure which is considered quite safe. Nevertheless, any anesthesia carries some risk, and the common ones known for GA are listed below for your review before you sign your informed consent:
Allergic reactions to any of the medications utilized.
Discomfort, swelling or bruising at the site where the IV catheter is placed for the administration of drugs.
Vein irritation, called phlebitis, where the needle (IV catheter) is placed into the vein. Sometimes, this may progress to a level where arm or hand motion may be restricted temporarily, and further medication or treatment may be required for relief.
Nausea and vomiting, although not common, are unfortunate side effects of GA. Bed rest, and sometimes medications may be required for relief.
General anesthesia is a serious medical procedure and, whether given in a hospital or out-patient surgery center carries with it the risk of brain damage, stroke, cardiac arrest or death.
How to Prepare Yourself for General Anesthesia & Surgery
Patients may not have anything to eat or drink (including water) for eight (8) hours prior to the appointment unless other arrangements have been made with your surgeon. Children should not consume milk products or solids after midnight the night prior to surgery.
A responsible adult must accompany the patient to the office, remain in the office during the procedure, and drive the patient home. Patients under the age of 18 must have a legal guardian present to complete the consent process.
The patient should not make any important decisions, drive a vehicle or operate any machinery for 24 hours following the anesthesia experience.
Please wear loose fitting, comfortable clothing with sleeves which can be rolled up past the elbow, and low-heeled shoes. Contact lenses, jewelry, and dentures must be removed at the time of surgery.
Please clarify with the surgeon prior to any procedure as to whether any medication is to be discontinued or taken. All pre-operative medications instructed by the surgeon should be taken with just a sip of water the morning of your surgery. In some cases, your prescribing physician should be notified of such changes.
Females taking birth control pills should be aware that some antibiotics prescribed by your surgeon may interfere with their efficiency and should, therefore, consider an alternate method of contraception.
Patients should arrange to have someone assist them in the post-operative recovery period for at least the initial 24 hours.
Patients are strongly encouraged to stop smoking from the time of the pre-operative visit through the surgery, as it can adversely affect your healing and the final result. Patients are requested to stop smoking at the time surgery is first considered as stopping immediately prior to surgery offers little benefit.
Patients Undergoing Local Anesthesia Only
You may eat a light meal prior to your surgical appointment.
Contact your family physician regarding prescribed anticoagulant medications.
Take all prescribed medications as directed by your physician.
Plan for a soft food diet.
We are here to help. Please do not hesitate to call the office if you have any questions or problems. Dr. Bukzin can be reached 24 hours a day in case of emergency.
What to do after extractions/surgery
The Day of Surgery
- 1) There will be some degree of discomfort, and pain arises as the numbness subsides. At the first sign of pain or discomfort, take (3-4) tablets of 200mg Motrin/Ibuprofen/Advil. If you cannot take NSAIDS products, then take (2) 365mg Tylenol/Acetaminophen. Repeat every 6–8 hours as necessary. If the pain is not relieved, then you may take the prescribed pain medication, but only in small doses, and only after eating some food. All pain medications have the ability to cause severe nausea, and vomiting. It is very important that you have some food in your stomach before you take them. To repeat: take (3–4) tablets of 200mg Motrin/Ibuprofen/Advil as the numbness wears off. Do not take the prescribed narcotic pain medicine unless absolutely necessary.
- 2) Do not disturb the area of surgery. The first stages of healing are aided by placing tissues at rest. Avoid vigorous chewing, excessive spitting, or rinsing for the first 24 hours as initial healing may be delayed, active bleeding restarted, or infection introduced.
- 3) Expect minor bleeding or oozing from the operative site. This bleeding may continue throughout the first day. For the first hour, keep firm pressure on the area of surgery by biting on the gauze sponge placed in your mouth at the office. If bleeding persists continue constant pressure on a fresh piece of gauze sponge for an additional 30-60 minutes. It is acceptable to leave the gauze in for longer periods of time (even if soaked) if it is maintaining pressure on the surgical site. Tea has an ingredient called tannin that promotes blood clotting.
- 4) Limit physical activity during the first 24–48 hours after surgery. Over exertion may lead to post-operative bleeding, and discomfort. When you lie down, keep your head elevated at least 45 degrees on a pillow.
- 5) Pain following oral and facial surgery will be most severe within the first 6–8 hours after the operation. To limit the amount of pain, you should take Motrin/Ibuprofen/Advil (3–4) tablets of 200mg or (2 tabs) of 365mg Tylenol/Acetaminophen before the numbness wears off. If you have to take the prescribed medication, remember to have some food intake prior to ingesting, and to start slowly. Please do not drink alcoholic beverages while taking pain medication. Do not wait for the pain to become unbearable before using some form of pain medication, as then it will be more difficult to control. Moderate to sever pain usually does not last longer than 24–72 hours, sometimes peaking on the third post-operative day. Relief should begin on the fourth post-operative day. Persistent or increasing pain 3–5 days following oral surgery may be caused by early loss of the blood clot (dry socket) or infection. If you feel that this may be happening to you, please contact us so the surgical site may be re-evaluated.
- 6) Swelling related to the surgical procedure usually develops during the first 12–24 hours following surgery, often peaking on the third post-operative day. It should begin to subside by the fourth day after your surgery. Swelling can be minimized a great deal by putting a ice pack on the side of your face for 30–45 minutes every hour while you are awake during the first 24 hours following the surgery, unless you receive special instructions. Anti-inflammatory medications, suchas Motrin/Ibuprofen/Advil and Steroids (if prescribed), also may help decrease swelling.
- 7) Fluid intake and nutrition is very important. I suggest you start with clear carbonated beverages such as Ginger Ale, Seven-Up, or Sprite. Once your stomach is settled you can advance to other fluids such as water, teas, soda, broth, soups, or juices as tolerated. Please avoid hot liquids until the numbness has worn off, and the bleeding has stopped. You should try to maintain a normal fluid balance to assist in the healing process. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding your post-operative diet.
- 8) Avoid using a straw to ingest milk shakes or thick beverages, as it may cause the blood clot to dislodge and delay healing. Try to avoid generating excessive negative pressure.
- 9) Food selection is largely a matter of your choice. Soft, cool foods that require little or no chewing are most easily tolerated initially. A nutritious diet throughout your healing process is very important to your comfort and to assist your immune system. Since you will be taking medication it is important to remember that eating can prevent nausea sometimes associated with certain medications. If vomiting occurs please do not ingest water after you vomit. Use an acidic beverage to return your stomach to an acidic level. Water will only encourage further vomiting, ginger ale or sprite are recommended. Please contact the office if excessive nausea and vomiting continues. Once your stomach is settled, soup, broiled fish, stewed chicken, mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, and cooked vegetables can be added to your diet as your comfort indicates. Ensure, Carnation Instant Breakfast and yogurt supply excellent added nutrition. You are strongly encouraged to add a Multivitamin to your post-operative regimen.
- 10) Take any special medication such as antibiotics we have prescribed on the specified dosing schedule. Yogurt with active cultures or acidophilus should be taken while on antibiotics to prevent diarrhea. It is important to take the antibiotics to completion (as directed). If you are given antibiotics and take birth control pills, you should be aware that the birth control pill may become ineffective, therefore please consider alternative contraception measures.
- 11) Take any regularly scheduled medication (for diabetes, high blood pressure, etc.) on your regular schedule unless advised to do otherwise.
- 12) Try to avoid smoking completely, as it tends to slow the healing process, and may also contribute to development of a dry socket, infection, or increased, and prolonged discomfort.
- 13) Do not drive an automobile for 24 hours following your surgery if you have had general anesthesia, or if you are taking a narcotic pain medication.
Day Following Surgery and Thereafter
- 1) On the morning of the day following surgery, rinse your mouth carefully with the solution made by adding 1/2 teaspoon of salt to a large glass of warm water. Repeat three times a day for 1 week post-operatively. Resume brushing any remaining teeth, and your oral hygiene as soon as possible.Do not avoid brushing area as this will cause more inflammation in the area. Please do not use a syringe or a water pic to aggressively rinse during the first week. This can dislodge the blood clot.
- 2) Do not worry about the stitches. Stitches (also known as sutures) are usually placed to control bleeding, aid healing, and prevent for from collecting in the surgical site especially for lower teeth. The sutures we use dissolve in 5–7 days, typically do not require removal.
- 3) Any swelling, soreness, or stiffness in the jaw muscles can be relieved by applying a warm moist towel to the affected side of the face several times a day. Moist heat should be used after the first 24 hours. If swelling, tenderness, or pain should increase after the first three days post-operatively, please contact the office.
- 4) Sometimes a soft diet may be necessary for the first few days following surgery. Most patients are able to resume regular food intake within a short time.
- 5) Bruising marks may appear on the skin of the face during the first few days after surgery. Moist heat application will help relieve this condition.
- 6) A slight elevation in temperature or fever is normal in the first 24–48 hours.
- 7) Sensitivity may develop in the adjacent areas to the surgical site, especially if a tooth or teeth were surgically removed. Adjacent teeth may become sensitive, this will resolve in approximately 2 weeks.
- 8) An ear ache may develop, this is referred pain, and can be felt anywhere in the facial region after surgery. It is normal, and will resolve shortly.
- 9) A sore throat may develop.
- 10) If the corners of the mouth were stretched during surgery, they may become dry, and crack. Keep your lips moist during the post-operative period to prevent this.
Faithful compliance with these instructions will add to your comfort and hasten your recovery. Be sure to follow these instructions carefully. Only in this way will you avoid the complications which lead to unnecessary discomfort, and delayed recovery. Should any undue reaction or complications arise, notify the office immediately.
- Sinus Precautions: Due to the proximity of the extraction site to the sinuses the following should be observed: First, avoid nose blowing for 4–6 weeks. Second, do not create negative pressure in the mouth (i.e. No sucking on a straw). Lastly, if you need to sneeze do not suppress it (i.e. Open your mouth while sneezing).
- IV Site Discomfort: Sometimes the IV site, which is found in the arm or hand, may have redness, bruising, or may be uncomfortable after general anesthesia. Use warm, moist compresses and elevate the site. Taking aspirin will also help with the discomfort.
- Implant Surgery: In addition to the above instructions, you should avoid biting on the implant for at least six weeks. Also, you can brush the implant very gently, with a regular toothbrush, so as to keep it clean.
Brush all of your teeth, except the surgical area the night of surgery. The next day brush all of your teeth, brushing gently over the surgical area. Gently rinse your mouth with warm salt water 3 times per day, especially after meals. You may have small openings in the tissue in and around the surgical site for up to six weeks. Rinsing after every meal until you do not see an opening in the tissue will help you to keep food out of the site and to keep your mouth clean. Do not use a Water Pik or water syringe to assist in removing food from the surgical area until about 5 days after surgery. All of these hygiene methods will help the surgical site to heal faster.
Light colored sutures may become loose and dissolve within 2–7 days. Black sutures do not dissolve and must be removed.
Swelling & Brushing
Maximum swelling normally occurs within 72 hours after surgery. Use ice packs during the first 48 hours after the surgery to reduce swelling. Use warm moist towels or a heating pad to help resolve the swelling after the first 48 hours has passed. The swelling and bruising may occur and persist for 5–7 days.
- Ice: Place an ice bag firmly to your cheek, half-hour on, half-hour off, for the first 24–48 hours.
- Heat: On day 3 (72 hours after surgery) apply moist, warm compresses over swollen area or a heating pad low setting.
Rest following any surgery. By sitting up or elevating your head on 2–3 pillows when lying down, you will have less oozing and swelling. Avoid physical activities for 2–3 days following surgery or if the bleeding is present. Avoid driving or operating hazardous equipment the day of the surgery if a general anesthetic has been administered.
You can have liquids immediately after your surgery (i.e. juice or milk shake). Once the numbness starts to wear off you can start having soft diet such as soup, mashed potatoes, ice cream, jello, pudding… etc. Advance your diet as tolerated the next day. Avoid rough foods and popcorn for several weeks.
Do not use your medications on an empty stomach. An adequate oral intake will help prevent nausea and dehydration. Nausea can generally be prevented by taking tea with toast, broth with crackers, 7-Up, Ginger Ale, etc. If vomiting persists the day after surgery please notify us.
Take Ibuprofen, Tylenol or the pain medication prescribed for you as directed before the numbness wears off (within 2–6 hours). In general, after oral surgery you should be feeling better by the third day. If you are not feeling better or pain is worsening, please notify us.
Some oozing of blood is expected following any surgical procedure, especially within the first 24 hours. If bleeding is present, bite firmly on a gauze pad or moistened tea bag placed directly over the surgical site for 30-60 minutes. It is acceptable to leave the gauze in for longer periods of time (even if soaked) if it is maintaining pressure on the surgical site. Repeat as necessary, with fresh gauze. Often, you will only need to replace the gauze 2–3 times in the first 24 hours and will not need to use it the day following your procedure. It is normal to have a small amount of blood present in your saliva for a few days and it is not necessary to place gauze in at this time. Avoid spitting, laying flat, physical activity, smoking, hot liquids, or sucking through a straw, all of which will increase bleeding. By doing these things you can help to avoid what is commonly known as dry socket.
After surgery, it is normal to be numb anywhere from 4–6 hours because of the local anesthesia that is given. Numbness or tingling of the lip or tongue may sometimes persist on the operated side. This is almost always a temporary condition; one which can last for a few days due to swelling. In rare cases, numbness can last several months.
The use of antibiotics may decrease the effectiveness of oral birth control pills and the uses of alternative birth control methods are recommended. Avoid smoking and alcoholic beverages for at least 72 hours. Small, sharp bone fragments may work their way to the surface of the surgical site during the healing period. Should this occur it is advisable to return back to the office for an evaluation.
By following these instructions carefully the patient can avoid the complications which lead to unnecessary discomfort delayed recovery, or a compromised result which could lead to further surgery. Should any undue reaction or complications arise, notify the office immediately.
Fracture Post-Operative Instructions
- 1) Take any special medications such as antibiotic we have prescribed on the specified dosing schedule. Yogurt with active cultures or addophilus should be taken while on antibiotics to prevent diarrhea. It is important to take the antibiotic to completion (as directed). If you are given antibiotics and take birth control pills, you should be aware that the birth control pill may become ineffective, therefore please consider alternative contraception measures.
- 2) Some degree of discomfort and pain may arise as the numbness subsides. At the first sign of pain or discomfort take the prescribed non-narcotic medication. If the pain persists, you can follow up the non-narcotic medication with the prescribed narcotic. Please be advised that prior to taking any narcotic medication, you must eat, as not doing so can cause nausea / vomiting.
- 3) Limit physical activity during the first 24–48 hours after surgery. Over exertion may lead to post-operative bleeding and discomfort. When you lie down, keep your head elevated at least 45 degrees on a pillow.
- 4) Apply ice to your face for the first three days (72 hours) after surgery
- 5) Begin application of warm compresses on the fourth day following surgery
- 6) You should resume brushing your teeth the morning following surgery. This is to be done very gently utilizing a soft bristle tooth brush. Warm salt water rinses should be done following brushing, as well as after mealtime and then again at bedtime. (8 oz. of warm water and 1 tsp. of salt).
- 7) Peridex mouth rinse is to be used twice a day. Swish for 1 min. then spit. Once in the morning then again at bedtime.
- 8) Wax has been provided for you and is to be used to smooth over any areas of wire which may cause discomfort or irritation to the gums. Be sure to remove wax before meals as well as for brushing and rinsing. It is extremely important to you recovery to keep up good oral hygiene.
- 9) Diet should consist of liquids and pureed foods. A multivitamin and dietary drink supplements are highly encouraged (i.e. Ensure). Use of a straw will be necessary.
If you had dental (endosteal) implants placed, general post-operative instructions apply, but we would like to emphasize a few things:
- 1) Placement of dental (endosteal) implants usually does not create a great deal of pain. Pain is usually controlled with 800mg Motrin/Ibuprofen/Advil or 2 tabs of 325mg Tylenol/Acetaminophen. However, your surgeon has provided a narcotic pain medication for severe pain if necessary, take only as directed.
- 2) You need to brush the area after the first 24 hours with a very soft toothbrush. Do not avoid brushing the area. Most times the sutures that are placed are dissolvable sutures which will dissolve on their own in 7-10 days.
- 3) If a one-stage implant was placed so that you can actually see the metal part protruding from the gum tissue, it is very important for you to keep this area clean. You may start with a Q-tip dipped in Peridex (prescribed) or even warm salt water. Just clean the metal part protruding from the tissue. Then you can proceed to a soft toothbrush.
- 4) Avoid chewing hard foods on the implant sites. Chewing forces during the healing phase can decrease the body’s ability to heal around the implant, leading to non-integration.
Here are some guidelines and instructions for you to follow to aid in the healing and recovery of your dental implant surgery:
- Rest at home, keep quiet, and generally take it easy for 24-48 hours following surgery. It may not be necessary to go to bed, however, it is important that you rest.
- If you had general anesthesia or I.V. sedation, you may experience light-headedness, dizziness, and sleepiness following surgery. It is advisable not to stay alone. A responsible adult should stay with you for 12 hours after surgery.
- We know what you are eager to see the surgery that has been performed. However, please do not forcefully pull your lips or cheeks away to inspect the surgical site. This action could tear your sutures or delay healing.
- The mouth may be gently rinsed with warm salt water solution starting around two hours after your surgery. This rinsing should be done frequently, especially after meals and before bedtime for one week. You may drink a moderate amount of liquids (water, milk, juice, etc.).
The surgical area will swell and may become quite large. After the procedure, apply an ice pack to the side of your face where the surgery was performed at 15 minutes intervals for the remainder of the day. A warm compress will aid in reducing swelling after the first 24 hours. Swelling usually reaches it maximum within the first 40 hours post-surgery and then slowly decreases.
Bruising sometimes occurs after implant surgery. It is a natural result of the drilling involved to place the implants and you should not be alarmed if it occurs, the bruising often shows up a few days post-surgery and may be located either above or below the area that the implants were placed.
Please do not smoke for 24 hours.
Smoking may dry out the tissues and delay healing. Smoking can also cause you to bleed more and for longer periods of time. Learn more about the dangers of smoking during your surgical period.
No straws, please. It is most important that you maintain a nutritious diet during the weeks of healing. The patient who maintains a good diet of soft foods generally feels better has less discomfort, and heals faster. Since you will be taking medication, it is important that you eat to prevent nausea. Here are some foods we recommend:
•Soft cooked vegetable
•Soft boiled or scrambled eggs
If you currently wear a full or partial denture or a single-tooth prosthesis (called a flipper) you may wear your appliance immediately after the implant surgery, unless your oral surgeon instructs you otherwise. Your appliance should be left in for the first 24 hours to help contour the gum underneath and minimize swelling. On the day following the surgery, your appliance may be removed for cleaning purposes (rinsing and brushing), but should not be left out for a long period of time.
Three days after surgery, your appliance may be left out for a period of time and at night. If your gums are excessively sore or you feel unusual pressure from your appliance, you should not wear it until you have seen your dentist or surgeon and have it adjusted.
You can expect to be uncomfortable for the first day after surgery. The second day may also be uncomfortable with some more noticeable swelling. On the third day, discomfort generally lessens, with progressive improvement thereafter.
Take your prescribed medication as directed.
We are concerned about your well-being. If you experience any difficulty in breathing, excessive bleeding, persistent nausea/vomiting, or any pain that is unusual, please call us at any time.
Arlington: (703) 483-9591
Gainesville: (703) 753-7933