Post Op Instructions

Happy Senior Woman — Dental Services in Indianapolis, IN
Following instructions post oral surgery is the best way to ensure proper healing and prevent complications. After a procedure the doctor or dental assistant will give you complete instructions on care that are specific to your procedure. Below are some common practices to guide your healing process. If you have any questions please contact our office at 317-789-1000.

  • Always wait 2 hours after surgery before eating to let anesthesia wear off.
  • Avoid hot and cold food or drink for the next few days.
  • Warm salt water rinses can help alleviate pain and keep the area clean.
  • If you can, take Advil or Tylenol for pain, if pain persists for 7 or more days contact our office at 317-789-1000.


When you have a filling done, the decay is removed from the tooth and replaced with a resin or amalgam. This is a new material in your tooth and it will take your body time to adjust to it. Immediately following the treatment you should wait 2 hours to allow for the anesthesia to wear off before eating. Keeping a soft diet the day of the procedure will help minimize pain and sensitivity. You should avoid chewy or hard foods such as taffy, bagels, steak, or hard candy. Also, avoiding hot and cold food or drink for the first few days following the procedure will help with the sensitivity. After a few days your teeth should feel as good as new. We recommended continuing with your hygiene schedule and at home care to ensure your fillings will last a long time. You may experience sensitivity for up to a week following the procedure, this is normal and to be expected. If you experience pain or sensitivity for more than 7 days following the procedure contact our office at 317-789-1000.


You have just had a tooth or several teeth removed from the bony tissue of your jaw. Your body has already started the healing process by bleeding. The next step is the formation of a blood clot. It is very important to protect the clot. If the clot comes out a “dry socket” will occur. The pain from this will vary from constant, dull, to exquisite. It will also lengthen the healing time. If you experience bleeding that won't stop, try biting on a moistened tea bag for 30 minutes. If the bleeding persists or you experience severe pain, call our office at 317-789-1000 or go to the nearest emergency room.
Following the instructions below will greatly reduce your chance of getting a dry socket and ensure a smooth healing process.

  • Gauze: Change the gauze every 15-20 minutes, no sooner, until the bleeding stops. Fold one piece in half, making a small square, and place it over the extraction site, and bite down with firm pressure. When the bleeding stops or just oozes, you no longer need the gauze in your mouth.
  • If you experience bleeding that won't stop, try biting on a moistened tea bag for 30 minutes.
  • Do not spit forcefully or rinse your mouth for at least 24 hours.
  • Do not smoke. Try to wait 48 hours before smoking, as it greatly increases the risk of a dry socket.
  • Do not drink through a straw.
  • Do not pick at, scratch, or brush directly on the extraction site.
  • Do not do any heavy lifting, over 35 pounds.
  • Avoid carbonated drinks for 24 hours.
  • Eat a soft diet for first few days, such as:
  • Gelatin
  • Pudding
  • Yogurt
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Mac and Cheese
After 24 hours, begin warm salt water rinses. Rinses can be done 4-5 times a day. Put ½ teaspoon of salt into a glass of warm water. Remember not to spit or swish forcefully.

It is important to keep the area clean by brushing the teeth, remembering to be gentle around the extraction site as to not injure yourself.

Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling and root planing is often referred to as a “deep cleaning”. This is not an ordinary 30-minute prophylactic appointment and can take anywhere from 90 minutes to 3 hours. Your hygienist and Dr. Noble will inform you of your periodontal status at your comprehensive exam.

After the procedure your gums may be sore and irritated for a few days. To relieve pain and cleanse the area you should rinse your mouth with warm salt water (1 tsp salt/8 oz water) 2-3 times a day for the first few days. You should continue your recommended at home oral hygiene routine, but be careful to brush gently so that you do not create further irritation. If you experience swelling or stiffness in your mouth you can place a cold compress on the area and if you can take Advil or Tylenol. Avoid any hard or chewy foods for 2-3 days following the procedure to ensure proper healing. If you experience pain, swelling, or stiffness for more than 7 days contact our office at 317-789-1000.