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• There should be no pain immediately after the operation due to the local anaesthetic use. This should last for 3-4 hours before sensation returns slowly and care should be taken to avoid biting the lip or tongue during this time.
• Pain tends to be worse on the second and third day but gradually improves over a period of 7-10 days.
• Simple pain killers such as Paracetamol, Ibuprofen or Codydramol should control the pain.
• If there is a sudden increase in the pain after a few days, this may indicate infection and the department should be contacted on 01908 995308.
• This is common after surgery has been carried out in the jaw.
• The swelling reaches its maximum the day after surgery.
• Swelling should resolve by 7-10 days after the surgery.
• Bruising of the face occasionally occurs and can take up to 2 weeks to resolve.
• This should be minimal by the time you leave the hospital.
• Blood stained saliva is to be expected for 24-48 hours after the operation.
• Do not rinse the mouth for the first day. This may disturb the blood clot and cause bleeding.
• If persistent bleeding occurs, roll up the damp gauze which has been provided for you (dampened with cool water) and place it over the wound and bite firmly for a period of at least 20 minutes.
• No smoking or vaping for at least 48 hours – longer if possible, avoid alcohol for 24 hours
• The next day, use a hot salt water mouth bath. The water should be as warm as possible and a spoonful of salt added.
• Take a mouthful and hold it still for a couple of minutes before spitting out.
• Repeat 4 times daily for 1/2 weeks until healed.
• Keep your teeth clean with gentle tooth brushing if possible.
• Your mouth opening will be restricted for about a week.
• Eating semi-solid food should be possible.
• Use your own discretion and gradually start eating normally according to your own pace.
• These should dissolve/fall out on their own between 1-4 weeks.
• Antibiotics may be required after the operation in some cases.
• If necessary, antibiotics and painkillers will be prescribed or advice given.
Time off work
This will depend on your profession and the amount of surgery. The average time off work should be between 3-5 days, but there is a great deal of variation between individuals.
If follow up is needed, you are normally seen 2 weeks after surgery. An appointment is usually arranged before you leave the hospital.
If you want help
Contact the Oral & Facial Surgery Department at Milton Keynes Hospital on 01908 995308 (between the hours of 9am and 5pm MonThurs, 9am-1:30pm Fri). Out of hours contact the Luton & Dunstable Hospital on 08451270127and ask for the Maxillofacial Senior House Officer on call (Bleep 777).