Post Op

Post Op Photo

Extractions | Fillings | Crowns and Bridges | Root Canal Treatment | Teeth Cleaning/Deep Cleaning | Gum Surgery | Implant Surgery | Dentures

Your Standish, ME Family Dentists

At Standish Family Dental Health, we believe dental care should be an affair to the whole family. We're proud to provide the highest quality in dental care while maintaining a friendly, easygoing office environment, and our doctors have years of experience keeping patients' and their family's teeth clean, healthy, and strong. While normally this involves more straightforward cosmetic and general dental procedures, sometimes our patients require dental surgery. Advances in surgical techniques and technologies have made these procedures faster, safer, and more effective than ever, but you still may need a few days of rest during post-op. This page will paint a picture of what post-op looks like for all of the surgeries we perform.


Generally, a blood clot will form after a tooth extraction in the missing tooth's socket - this clot stops bleeding and protects exposed jawbone and soft tissue. Sometimes, though, the clot can dislodge or fail to form - a condition called a dry socket. Dry sockets are fairly painful, so if you develop one we ask that you please call our office immediately so we can treat it. In most cases, applying a medicated dressing is enough to kick-start the healing process.

We'll have you place pressure on the gauze pad that covers the extraction site for one hour - this pressure will stop any bleeding and help a clot form. We won't lie: you may experience some pain, bruising, and swelling, but the medications we give you combined with sucking on ice will help to nullify any discomfort.

We ask that you:

  • Don't eat or drink anything hot on the day of your procedure.
  • Don't rinse your mouth.
  • Don't drink with a straw or smoke cigarettes.
  • Avoid carbonated beverages.
  • Don't brush on the day of your surgery - you can resume a gentle brushing and flossing routine the day after.
  • Avoid vigorous exercise after the extraction
  • Eat only soft foods for two or three days after your procedure
  • If you experience excessive bleeding, pain, or swelling, call us to let us know


Fillings are a fairly noninvasive procedure, but you may find your lips and tongue numb for several hours after your appointment due to the anesthetic used. During this numb period, it's best to avoid food and hot beverages to you don't accidentally burn yourself or bite your lip, tongue, or cheek.

You may find your fillings to have temperature and pressure sensitivity for the first few days, but this is normal. You can take any over the counter pain reliever to alleviate discomfort.

Crowns and Bridges

A crown or bridge is a more involved procedure and requires more than one appointment. During the first appointment, your doctor will anesthetize your mouth and prepare to file down your teeth for restoration. We'll place a temporary crown or bridge to protect your teeth, and then wait for your permanent one to be made. You may find your mouth numb after this first appointment, so again, please avoid eating or drinking hot liquids.

If your temporary crown falls off, please call our office immediately. We'll schedule you for an appointment as soon as possible and re-place the crown on your tooth, so be sure to bring your temporary crown with you to the appointment. You can help ensure the safety of your crown by avoiding hard or sticky foods.

Your temporary crown may be sensitive to temperature and pressure, but this will wear off with the permanent crown. Again, OTC pain medication is effective for fighting discomfort.

Root Canal Treatment

After a root canal, the tissues that support your tooth in the jawbone will need time to heal, and your tooth will feel very tender in the first few weeks or months. To reduce inflammation and expedite the healing process, we recommend taking 600mg of ibuprofen (3 tabs of 200mg Advil, Motrin, or Ibuprofen) every four hours on the day of your surgery, then using it as necessary in the following days. You can also substitute acetaminophen (Tylenol) if you prefer. Avoid chewing with the tooth until your sensitivity is gone.

You may also find that your jaw muscles are sore from keeping your mouth open or the injection site of the anesthetic is sore - this is totally normal. It's also common for the clam that secures the rubber dam to your tooth to irritate the gum tissue for a few days. These are nothing to worry about, but if swelling develops or pain increases, please call us.

Teeth Cleaning (Deep Cleaning)

After a full deep cleaning, your teeth may feel sensitive to temperature, an effect that will fade in time. You can keep brushing like normal, but if you experience excessive bleeding, please contact us immediately.

Gum Surgery

After the surgery, you may experience pain, swelling, and bleeding, but this is normal. Applying ice to the surgical site for 10 minutes on and 5 minutes off can reduce swelling, and the medications we prescribe will further reduce discomfort.

Make sure to:

  • Don't raise your lips with your fingers to look at the area
  • Don't brush your teeth near the surgical site - but your other teeth are fine
  • Don't smoke
  • Don't drink out of a straw the day of surgery
  • Always feel free to contact our office with any questions, difficulties, or concerns!

Implant Surgery

Proper oral hygiene is vital for a healthy smile - and that's especially true with implants. Implants increase sensitivity in the mouth, and bacteria can attack sensitive areas and wreak havoc on gums and jawbones. We ask that you see us twice a year after your implants so we can monitor your dental health more closely.

To best care for your implants, we recommend you:

  • Don't raise your lips with your fingers to inspect the area
  • Avoid brushing near the site (other teeth are fine)
  • Take all medication exactly as prescribed


Dentures take getting used to, and you'll likely experience some discomfort with any new denture for a few days. We'll likely need to continue to adjust your dentures to reach the desired fit, and you may have trouble talking normally for a few days. The speaking difficulties will clear up on their own, but you can help expedite the process by reading a book or newspaper aloud to yourself a few times a day - this will help your tongue and mouth muscles more quickly adapt to your dentures.

For your dentures to work properly, you'll need to take great care of them. We recommend you:

  • Brush dentures daily with a soft-bristled toothbrush
  • Keep your dentures in a denture solution when not using them
  • Handle them with care, being particularly cautious around pets
  • If your dentures crack, break, or come loose, feel free to reach out to us with any questions.

Contact Your Standish & Gorham, ME Orthodontic Specialists

Have more questions about the surgery process? We're happy to help. Feel free to reach out to us at our contact page or use our easy online form to schedule an appointment at our Standish, ME practice. We can't wait to hear from you!