Surgical Instructions

Pre-Operative Patient Instructions

  1. Patients having intravenous (IV) medications must not have anything to eat or drink for at least 8 (eight) hours before the surgical appointment. This also includes the use of any tobacco products. Your surgery may be postponed or cancelled if you forget to follow these instructions.

  2. The patient must be accompanied by an adult, and this person must remain in the reception area until the patient is discharged into their care. If this person drops off the patient and then leaves the office, the procedure will  be cancelled and re-scheduled.

  3. If any pre-medication has been ordered, take the medication with only a sip of water, one hour before the appointment.

  4. Regular prescription medications that are usually taken in the morning should be taken with a sip of water at least one hour before surgery, unless directed to do otherwise.

  5. If the patient develops a fever, cough, or cold, please call the office at 706-234-0718.

  6. Clothing should be loose fitting with short sleeves.

  7. Contact lenses should be removed ahead of time.

  8. Do not wear lipstick, excessive makeup, or nail polish on the day of surgery.

  9. Please remove all  bracelets, necklaces, watches. large rings, tongue or lip piercings.

  10. The person accompanying the patient, or another responsible person, should provide direct assistance in walking the patient (i.e. arm support) and transporting the patient to and from any bed or seated area. This is to limit and minimize the potential for injury. When arriving home, the patient should be kept under continuous observation for at least 8 (eight) hours following dismissal from the office.

    Please assist the patient to closely follow the Doctor's instructions regarding medications, use of oral gauze packs, rest, diet, ice packs, etc. Assure that the patient does not operate any motor vehicle or machinery, or make any important decisions for at least 24 hours following surgery. Please call our office at 706-234-0718 if any questions arise during the recovery period.

  11. If for any reason you are not able to keep the appointment, please notify the office as soon as possible. Thank you!


These instructions cover a wide range of procedures. However, your surgery may have more specific instructions.

GAUZE PACKS: Bite firmly on the gauze packs for one hour. Thereafter, change the packs each hour. Completely remove the packs when taking your medication. When bleeding stops, you may discontinue the gauze. It is not unusual for bleeding to continue slowly for several hours before subsiding. Do not spit, as this will prolong bleeding.

 The pain medication should be taken within 1 to 2 hours after surgery, before the numbing medication wears off.  Be sure to take pain medications with soft food or milk. Avoid taking the pain medication and antibiotic at the same time. If you develop nausea, itching, hives, or any breathing difficulty, stop the medication and call the Doctor immediately. If you have over-the counter anti-nausea medications, you may use these to control nausea if needed.

 Apply to the area of surgery, alternating 15 minutes on and off, as much as possible for the first 48 hours after  surgery. After the 4th post-op day, you may substitute moist heat applications.  Be sure to keep the head elevated on extra pillows.

SWELLING: can last for several days. You will notice more swelling the day after surgery, and this will increase and peak at 48 to 72 hours after the procedure. This is normal. The level of discomfort usually follows the level of swelling. Be sure to keep the head propped up. Do not use heat during the first 3 days as this may actually increase the swelling and cause more discomfort. Avoid situations where you need to bend over at the waist--keep the back straight and the head up at all times.

ACTIVITY: no heavy work or heavy exercising during the first 2 to 3 days after surgery. No driving or operating machinery for 24 hours, especially if you were sedated or received intravenous (IV) medication.

DRINKING AND EATING: during the first 24 hours after surgery you may have liquids, jello, pudding, yogurt, and milkshakes. On the second day, you may advance your diet to soft foods requiring minimal chewing such as eggs, mashed potatoes, pancakes, etc. It is not unusual to take 7 to 10 days before you return to a normal, regular diet. AVOID potato chips, peanuts, crackers, popcorn, etc. for several weeks after your surgery. When drinking liquids, avoids using a straw for the first 48 hours after surgery to avoid irritating the healing tissues and to decrease bleeding.

RINSING AND BRUSHING: please wait until the day after surgery, unless directed to do otherwise. Use only warm water or warm salt water for rinsing. Avoid Listerine, peroxide, or any other medicated rinses for at least 4 days after surgery. When brushing, go slowly and carefully. In the back areas of the mouth, it may be more comfortable to use a Q-tip/toothpaste. You may notice a whitish film on the gums early after surgery. This is normal and will go away with good oral hygiene. The sutures (stitches) will usually dissolve in 3 to 5 days.

SMOKING: please do not smoke for at least 48 to 72 hours after surgery, preferrably not at all for better healing.

 call 706-234-0718. If your call is after normal office hours, our staff will be happy to answer your questions. 


Information viewed on this website is for information purposes only and should not be viewed as delivery of dental or medical care. No diagnosis or treatment is being provided, nor any establishment of a Doctor/patient relationship by the use of this website. If you have questions, the information contained therein should be discussed with the surgeon.