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  7. Gum Graft Post-Operative Care Instructions

Gum Graft Post-Operative Care Instructions


Brushing and Flossing: AVOID BRUSHING THE SURGICAL SITES until given specific instructions at your post-operative visit. You may brush and floss all other areas the day following surgery. You may notice a white film over the surgical sites; this is completely normal.

Mouthwash: Beginning 24 hours AFTER surgery, use one tablespoon of the prescribed mouthwash THREE times daily. Rinse only with Corsodyl for the first 2 weeks (or until the bottle is finished.

DO NOT rinse vigorously. Simply allow the rinse to wash over the graft site and then let the fluid pour out of the side of your mouth. Try to avoid spitting.

Avoid PEROXIDE-based and ALCOHOL-based rinses, such as Listerine, until 8 weeks after surgery.

Electric Toothbrushes: DO NOT use an electric toothbrush or a Water Pik anywhere in the mouth for 8 weeks following surgery.


FOR THE FIRST 24 HOURS: Adequate nutrition is essential for normal healing. Immediately following surgery, your diet should be restricted to COLD LIQUIDS. Smoothies are an ideal choice. Dietary supplements such as Instant Breakfast, Ensure or Vega 1 are good options. DO NOT EAT ON OR AROUND THE SURGICAL SITE FOR AT LEAST 4 WEEKS

After 24 Hours: Gradually progress to soft foods such as:

  • Soup
  • Steamed vegetables
  • Baked fish
  • Pasta

General things to avoid for the first several weeks:

  • Hard/tough/crunchy foods
  • Spicy foods
  • Meals with grains, seeds or nuts
  • Carbonated drinks
  • Alcoholic drinks
  • Drinking through a straw

DO NOT SKIP MEALS. If you take nourishment regularly, you will feel better, gain strength, have less discomfort, and heal faster.


DO NOT SMOKE for 3 weeks after surgery. Smoking is detrimental to healing tissues and will affect the results of surgery. If you can stop smoking for 3 weeks post-operatively, you are well on your way to breaking the habit all together.


Rest: Plan to rest at home the remainder of the day of surgery and the following day. You may read, watch TV or work at your desk at home. When sleeping, elevate your head to decrease swelling.

After 24 Hours: You may return to your regular schedule, but avoid strenuous activities such as heavy lifting, jogging, cycling and exercise programs for at least THREE DAYS following the day of surgery.


Pain Medications. Take pain medication within one hour after treatment with a meal, fruit juice, or a full glass of water. Try to avoid taking pain medication on an empty stomach. This medication may be repeated every four to six hours as needed for discomfort.

DO NOT USE ASPIRIN or products containing aspirin following surgery. Such medications can contribute to bleeding problems. Only non-aspirin pain relievers are recommended. If you have a history of stomach ulcers and/or gastric reflux, refrain from taking Ibuprofen or other NSAID pain killers. In these cases, paracetamol is a good option.


Ice Packs. Some swelling usually occurs after periodontal surgery. To minimize this, you will be advised to use ice packs. Place the ice pack only on the outside of your face, and NEVER directly over the surgical site. Start using ice packs after surgery: 10 minutes on, 10 minutes off. You may continue to apply ice packs as much as possible the first 12 hours after surgery.


Slight bleeding or oozing is normal during the first 1-2 days following surgery. If excessive bleeding occurs, DO NOT dab or put pressure on the surgical site at any time. Please call our office if you have any issues with excessive bleeding.


You have non-dissolving sutures holding the graft site together. One set of sutures will be removed at four weeks after surgery and the other set at another four weeks after that. Please refrain from touching or pulling on the sutures at any time. Try to avoid playing with the sutures with your tongue. Loosening of the sutures can significantly affect the success of the graft.


Do not pull on your lip to see the graft site. This can create tension on the site and can place the sutures and graft at risk. Too much movement and tension on the graft site can lead to the ultimate failure of the graft.

Post-operative appointments will be scheduled as deemed necessary. It is our goal and sincere desire to keep you as comfortable as possible following surgery. If you should have any questions or issues, please do not hesitate to call us.

I can be contacted on 078 66 52 54 55

Best wishes

Bhavin Pitamber