General Instructions for certain procedures

Scaling and Root Planing. After the periodontal procedure of scaling and root planing, it is best to rinse your mouth 2-3 times per day with warm salt water (one (1) teaspoon salt in 8 oz. water). You should start home care immediately, although you should be extremely gentle with the treated areas. If you feel discomfort in the gum tissue where you had treatment, Advil, Aleve or Tylenol may be taken for relief. The treated teeth may be sensitive tohot and cold. It is best to refrain from eating any hard or chewy foods for the next 48-72 hours while the treated area heals. You may also experience some swelling or jaw stiffness and if this does occur, placing a cold compress on the swelling or a hot towel on the stiffness will help. Smoking should be terminated for a period of 48-72 hours following these procedures, and one may even take this opportunity to stop smoking altogether. Please contact the office if any pain or swelling persists.

​​Temporary Crowns. Your temporary, provisional crowns are created to approximate the shape and contour of your permanent crowns being fabricated by our laboratory. However, they are indeed “temporary.” They are made of a special plastic that are strong enough to chew food, but they will not stand up to fingernail biting, gum chewing, eating

sticky foods or uncorking wine bottles. Avoid sticky foods, chewing gum and candy while wearing your temporary crown. Chewing gum “on the other side” is not an option. Eating these types of foods will loosen or remove your temporary crown. It is important to continue your home care regimen for the involved teeth, taking extra care tnot “pull up” on the floss around your temporary crowns, as this will dislodge them. Instead, pull the floss “through” the contact area. Your teeth will shift if the temporary is allowed to become loose or removed altogether, thus making your permanent crown not fit properly.  If your provisional crown or bridge comes off or becomes loose, this is not usually an emergency as it can temporarily be replaced in this manner: 1. Carefully note the exact manner the temporary fits over the teeth in question. Practice this once . 2. Dry the inside of the temporary, and as best you can, the tooth in question as well. 3. Place a dab of white toothpaste inside the temporary (Regular Crest, Colgate). 4. Place the temporary on your tooth and gently press it into position with a finger. It is best not to “bite” it into position
as you may break it. Breaking it is not good. Rinse away the excess toothpaste. We will need to see you as soon as possible to re-bond your provisional crown with dental cement.

​Root Canal Therapy.
  Depending on the previous condition of the tooth and the treatment required during root canal therapy, your tooth may be sore for 7 to 10 days. There is no cause for alarm, as this is a common consequence of root canal therapy. Discomfort following today’s treatment does not affect the successful outcome of treatment. While the tooth is tender, avoid chewing in the treated area. Should you have severe discomfort or persistent swelling, please contact the office. Post Op Instructions:
• Unless you have an allergy to ibuprofen (Advil), have been instructed by a physician not to take ibuprofen, or already have prescription pain medication, you may want to follow these instructions:  • To help reduce the tenderness or discomfort, begin immediately taking three (total of 600 mg) or four (total 800 mg) ibuprofen three times a day for three to five days.  • If an antibiotic was prescribed, it is important to take all of the medication.  • If you feel you are having an allergic reaction to the medication (such as a skin rash, itching, hives, or breathing difficulty), you should contact this office immediately.  • Warm salt water rinses are helpful (1 teaspoon salt in 8 oz. warm water, rinse 1 minute 2 times a day). • Do not chew on the tooth until all the tenderness is gone.  You may notice a medicinal taste between appointments. This is due to the penetrating quality of the medication in the tooth and is not harmful. It is normal for a thin layer of temporary filling to wear away. This will be removed and replaced at the next appointment. If all of the temporary filling comes out, call this office. If any other questions or problems arise, please do not hesitate to call.

Extractions. It is normal for minor bleeding to occur for the first 24 hours following surgery.

If slightly heavier bleeding occurs: 1. Place a piece of gauze over the surgery site. 2. Bite firmly on the gauze for at least 30 minutes. Do not chew on it. 3. If the bleeding continues, call the office. 4. Do not drink through a straw during the first 48 hours.
​Rinsing is an important part of the healing process when done properly: 1. Do not spit or rinse the surgical area on the day of the surgery. 2. The day after surgery you may gently rinse with warm salt water (one teaspoon salt in 8 oz. water). 3. You may brush your teeth and your tongue after the surgery. Be careful of the surgical site. Hungry? You should start with liquids and very soft foods for the first 24-48 hours following the surgery. If the area feels a little better, you can then move on to a normal diet. Be careful of chewing on hard foods near the surgical area. It is normal to experience some degree of swelling. If you do experience swelling, you can place ice over your face for 20-30 minutes at a time during the first 24 hours. This should help to reduce pain and swelling. Do not apply ice after the first 36 hours.  If you feel discomfort, it is recommended you take Advil, Aleve or Tylenol to ease the pain. If the pain persists, please contact our office.

Your tooth-colored restorations are very tough and strong and ready for chewing as soon as the anesthetic effect has dissipated. You should not have to “get used to” a new filling in terms of how your teeth fit together, though it is possible for teeth to be slightly more sensitive to hot and cold for a small period of time. Do continue to floss and brush normally around your new fillings or other restorations, unless they are temporary crowns as discussed earlier. While rare, please call us if your new filling feels “high”.

Occlusal Appliance Care.
  Your flat-plane appliance (“splint or biteguard”) is designed to dramatically decrease tension and stress in your chewing and jaw-positioning muscles, and sometimes used to stabilize mobile teeth. As these muscles relax, less pressure is applied to the bones and disc of your temporo-mandibular joint, allowing these to sit in a more natural, healthy position. Especially at first wearing of your appliance, the TM joint can temporarily make more sounds as the muscles decrease their tension and the internal disk sits in a better position. So that your appliance is as effective as possible and if no increase in discomfort is occurring, do continue to wear it as instructed until the next adjustment appointment.  1. Clean your appliance with your toothbrush in the morning, allowing it to air dry. 2. Do not let any pets, especially dogs, near your appliance. Dogs love to share in the joy of your new “chew bone” and
will gleefully crunch it to bits in seconds. 3. As your joints relax, your appliance must be modified to reflect your more relaxed jaw position. If you stop wearing
your appliance before it may be adjusted in our office, your joints and muscles will revert back to their unhealthy
position and this will slow your treatment.