Oral surgery recovery isn’t always easy, but the good news is that children usually heal quickly. Still, the first few hours and days after a procedure can be uncomfortable for the child — and stressful for the parent.
How can you help your child get through oral surgery recovery with as little pain as possible?
If your child had a tooth removed, there is likely to be bleeding at the extraction site. Encourage your child to maintain pressure by biting down on sanitary gauze placed over the area. Keep up the pressure in 45-to-60-minute intervals, dampening the gauze when it dries and replacing it when needed.
Maintain this cycle until the bleeding stops, and make sure your child keeps their head elevated until the blood clots.
Take the pain medication the dentist or oral surgeon prescribes. In some cases, children may not need anything stronger than over-the-counter pain relievers.
Use ice packs to reduce swelling. This can also numb the area and lessen discomfort.
Keep the Surgical Area Clean
Don’t allow your child to touch the surgical site. It must remain clean and free of germs, or the healing process will take longer and the risk of infection rises. Have your child use salt water to rinse their mouth. They can continue to brush their teeth, but caution them to be gentle so as not to disturb the surgical area, because this can lead to further bleeding.
Manage Their Diet
It’s important that your child avoid crunchy and hard foods during their oral surgery recovery. Offer soft foods such as macaroni and cheese, yogurt, scrambled eggs, pudding and applesauce.
Each day they can begin to eat more solid foods, as long as healing is progressing. Pancakes and mashed potatoes are more substantial options you can gradually work back into their diet. Make sure their food is only lukewarm, not overly hot or cold, as their teeth and gums will likely be sensitive to extreme temperatures.
If your child had IV sedation, make sure they take the rest of the day off from school and activities. Allowing them to rest for a few days following surgery will help healing progress faster. Even if they feel good after surgery, restrict their activity for two to three days.
Trust Our Team
We love caring for our young patients, and we do everything possible to help parents and kids get through oral surgery recovery swiftly. Contact Northeast Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery today if your child needs an oral surgical procedure — we’re the team you can trust.