After Exposure of an Impacted Tooth

Do not disturb the wound. If surgical packing was placed, leave it alone. The pack helps to keep the tooth exposed. If it gets dislodged or falls out do not get alarmed.


Some bleeding or redness in the saliva is normal for 24 hours. Excessive bleeding which results in your mouth filling rapidly with blood can frequently be controlled by biting with pressure on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues please call for further instructions.


Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling, apply an ice bag, plastic bag or towel filled with ice cubes on the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the ice continuously as much as possible for the first 48 hours.


No food or liquid should be taken for the first hour following surgery.  Avoid extremely hot liquid or food.  Eat soft nourishing foods for the first few days and drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated. 


You should begin taking pain medication as soon as you feel the local anesthetic wearing off. For moderate pain, 1 or 2 Tylenol or Extra Strength. Tylenol may be taken every 3-4 hours. Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) may be taken instead of Tylenol. Ibuprofen bought over the counter comes in 200 mg tablets: 2-3 tablets may be taken every 3-4 hours as needed for pain. For severe pain, the prescribed medication should be taken as directed. Do not take any of the above medication if you are allergic, or have been instructed by your doctor not to take it.

Oral Hygiene

Mouth cleanliness is essential to good healing. Clean your mouth thoroughly after each meal beginning the day after surgery. Brush your teeth as best you can. Rinse with a warm salt water solution (1/2 teaspoon of salt with 8 ounces of warm water) 3-4 times a day. Continue with the rinses until surgical sites are completely healed.

REMEMBER:   Good hygiene and wound care promotes good healing.


Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery.  Be aware that your normal nourishment intake is reduced. Exercise will weaken you and may cause throbbing or bleeding at the site. If this occurs, you should discontinue exercising.