How to Prepare for Your Oral Surgery Procedure

Posted on: 6 January 2016

If you are planning on getting oral surgery, such as having your wisdom teeth removed, there are certain things you need to do beforehand. Don't leave things until the last minute, or the stress and anxiety of trying to nail down plans will only make things worse during surgery. Here are some different ways to prepare for the procedure.

Follow the Dentist's Pre-Procedural Instructions

The instructions your dentist or oral surgeon gives you prior to the procedure are not recommendations. You need to follow them exactly as written. For example, if you are a smoker, they likely recommended you stop smoking a week or two before the surgery. Smoking cigarettes can reduce your body's ability to fight off infection, so it is important you stop as recommended. If getting an extraction, you won't be able to smoke after the procedure, since the sucking motion can cause the blood clot to disengage. Also take any antibiotics prescribed before the procedure or stop taking certain medications the dentist advised you to stop taking.

Stock Up on Liquids and Soft Foods

Get ready for your first few days of being on a liquid or soft food diet now so you aren't tempted to indulge in something you shouldn't be eating. Depending on the type of oral procedure, you might be on a strict liquid diet for several days, or be okay with a soft foods diet. Choose liquids that are nutritious and will keep you full, such as fruit smoothies and chicken or beef broth. For soft foods, look for anything that requires minimal chewing, such as yogurt, ice cream, pudding, oatmeal, and mashed potatoes. Some rice is also okay, though it depends how it is prepared.

Take Care of Your Mental Health

If you have anxiety about visiting the dentist or getting oral surgery, speak to your dentist before the appointment. Some people have extreme anxiety or panic attacks, which can make it harder to make it to the appointment, let alone making the procedure itself miserable. The best thing to do is take your mental health seriously and get some help. Your dentist might be able to prescribe a mild oral sedative that you can take the night before the procedure to help you get rest and before the procedure to relax you.

Set Up a Relaxing Space

Your home needs to have a place where you can go and relax during the first few days following the procedure. Make sure you have a ride home and someone who can take care of you when needed. Set up the living room couch or your bedroom in a way that everything you need is accessible and you can rest without distractions. Have someone watch your young children and pets, and call in to work to get at least a few days off.

If you have any questions about dental care or how to best prepare for an oral surgery, consider contacting a local family dentist for more information.