When you have a procedure that requires oral surgery, we take every precaution to ensure that you won’t have any problems after your surgery and during your recovery period.
We will give you instructions on how to care for the surgical site until it heals. We also give you a date for a follow-up appointment. Once you get home you must follow the instructions to the letter to ensure that you recover quickly and that no complications arise.
However, as with any surgical procedure, problems can arise. That is why we also instruct you to call us immediately if you have any problems that seem out of the ordinary or simply to ask a question. Ask us anything, no matter how trivial it may seem to you. You aren’t bothering us, we are here to help you. So, what can go wrong?
What Are the Symptoms of Infection?
We will start with the fact that swelling right after the procedure is normal. After all, we did perform surgery. Usually, an ice pack to your cheek, on and off for the first day or two, should control the swelling and bring it down. If you still have swelling after the third day you should call us as this would be the first sign that you may have an infection. If the swelling gets worse in the first three days rather than better you should also give us a call.
Pain after oral surgery is normal. For some people, it seems worse than it does for others, but this is because people have different levels of pain tolerance. We may prescribe painkillers or simply recommend an over-the-counter pain reliever. However, if the pain is persistent, gets worse, or lasts more than three to four days at the same level it was directly after the surgery, we want to know.
If you develop a fever after your oral surgery and after three days after the procedure, if the area is still swollen you could have developed a bacterial infection known as osteomyelitis. We can treat it, but we have to know about it.
If your bleeding doesn’t stop after several hours on the day of the surgery, you should call us. Sometimes we have patients that are on blood thinners and they neglect to let us know. If you are scheduled to have oral surgery, let us know in advance of any medications that you are taking so we can take the proper precautions and let you know if you should contact your prescribing physician prior to the surgery. Your physician may want to make temporary adjustments to your medications.