Frequently Asked Questions
Below are some frequently asked questions by our patients, but please feel free to call our office at 513-321-9627 if you
need additional information or have any other questions about the surgical procedures, treatments or services that we offer.
We are always happy to assist you.
What is excessive bleeding?
Post-operative bleeding is rarely a problem. Normal bleeding is a slight ooze which may occur off and on for the first day or two. It should be easily stopped by adequate pressure with gauze packs. Make sure the gauze is over the sockets and that you are putting adequate pressure on it. Anytime you remove the gauze it will be stained red. This is usually from touching the sockets and picking up stain. It does not mean that you are bleeding. Unless your mouth is filling up with blood or you are getting large clots in your mouth, you are alright. If you are getting large clots or your mouth is filling up with blood you may not have the gauze over the sockets or you may not be using enough pressure. You can hold the gauze over the sockets with your fingers and hold firm pressure with your fingers for several minutes. Biting on teabags in place of gauze may also help. It is just like getting cut anywhere else on the body. Generally pressure will stop bleeding. If you cannot control the bleeding with the above we should see you.
Will I be swollen and how long will it last?
It is not unusual at all to be swollen. Some people will have significant swelling after wisdom teeth are removed. Swelling will usually increase in size for three days. It will then resolve over the next several days. Generally medicine is given through your IV if significant swelling is expected. Once swelling goes away it should not return. Swelling which begins anytime after the first three days may indicate a rare infection. Use of ice may make you feel better but in the facial area it does not seem to help prevent swelling to a significant degree. Everyone is different. Some will swell a lot and some not at all. Swelling is part of healing and is nothing to worry about.
Will I have stitches?
You may or may not have stitches. We usually use stitches that come out on their own. If you have stitches which need removal, we will schedule a time for you to come back for removal.
What will my diet be?
You may eat and drink as soon as you feel up to it. You will be numb for a while so do not take anything very hot and do not try to chew on the sockets. Stick with food soft enough that if you accidentally chew on a socket it would not harm it. Foods with the consistency of a milkshake, smoothie, yogurt, pudding scrambled eggs and mashed potatoes are fine. As you heal you can adjust your diet to foods you are comfortable with.
Will I need an antibiotic?
Infection after surgery is rare and antibiotics are generally not needed. If you have an infection at the time of treatment you may need an antibiotic. Antibiotic use is a case by case decision.
Will I be in pain?
Surgery is an injury to your body. Your body responds with inflammation and discomfort is a part of inflammation. You will leave the office feeling numb and the best way to use analgesics is to take them before you need them. If given a prescription with a narcotic, start it as soon as possible but have something on your stomach prior to taking it. I recommend taking an NSAID such as two Advil in between doses of the prescription. Try to discontinue the narcotic prescription after the first day if possible as it can sometimes cause nausea, constipation, dizziness and problems with urination. If analgesics are taken while you are numb, they will be on board when feeling comes back. Discomfort can be prevented to some degree if analgesics are taken before your surgery. NSAID drugs such as Advil and Aleve are used. Tylenol would not work. NSAID drugs can keep your brain from being sensitized to pain if taken before the painful stimulus occurs. If you are having local anesthesia for your surgery, feel free to take Advil or Aleve one hour before your appointment. If you are going to sleep and have been instructed not to eat prior to surgery it is still alright to take Advil or Aleve one to two hours before your surgery with a sip of water. Remember that if you take drugs like Coumadin or Pradaxa, you cannot take NSAID unless given permission by your physician.
Will I be nauseated?
Infrequently a patient will be nauseated after surgery most often after anesthesia. Nausea is rarely associated with anesthesia. If it is it will pass quickly but may require medication. Nausea may also come from swallowing blood. Unfortunately, nausea from swallowing blood usually cannot be relieved until the blood is thrown up. Most often nausea comes from the narcotic in the pain medication. If it does, medicine can be given to relieve it. Most patients do not get nauseated, but some people have nervous stomachs to start with and are more prone.
What is an impacted tooth?
Impaction simply means the tooth is blocked from its normal eruption. The tooth can be blocked by bone, an adjacent tooth or by soft tissue. Usually there is a problem with adequate space.
Why can't I eat or drink before undergoing an anesthetic?
If you have anything in your stomach there is a chance it could come up into your throat and be breathed into your lungs while you're asleep. That would cause a serious medical emergency. You should not eat or drink for eight hours prior to an anesthetic.
I am on Coumadin. Do I need to stop it?
We will test your INR prior to your surgery. If it is in the therapeutic range it is generally not stopped. If you are having extensive surgery, it may have to be stopped and bridged with another blood thinner during the surgery period. Do not stop your Coumadin unless instructed by your physician.