After Exposure of an Impacted Tooth

Do not disturb the area. If surgical packing was placed, leave it alone. The pack helps to keep the tooth protected initially. If it gets dislodged or comes off do not get alarmed, it is a temporary covering only for 1 to 2 days.


  • 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 pressure on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding site for 30 minutes and by using ice on the area. If bleeding continues please call for further instructions.


  • Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling, apply an ice bag, an ice wrap, or a plastic bag filled with ice cubes on the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the ice continuously as much as possible for the first 36 hours.


  • Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid hot liquids or food. Soft food and liquids should be eaten on the day of surgery. Return to a normal diet  in 2 to 3 days unless otherwise directed.


  • You should begin taking pain medication as soon as you feel the local anesthetic or pain medicine wearing off. For mild pain, 1 or 2 Tylenol or Extra Strength. Tylenol may be taken every 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 moderate pain, the prescribed medication should be taken as directed.

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. You may rinse with warm salt water (1/4 teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) 3 to 6 times a day. Continue this procedure until healing is complete. REMEMBER: A clean wound heals better and faster. (Avoid Hydrogen Peroxide, Alcohol, and full strength Listerine).


  • Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. If you are considering exercise, throbbing or bleeding may occur. If this occurs, you should discontinue exercising. Be aware that your normal nourishment intake is reduced. Exercise may weaken you. If you get light headed, stop exercising.