Post-Op Instructions



General Guidelines for all procedures:

Avoid hard or sticky foods such as “hard tack” candies for a least 24 hours as chewing on these types of foods can loosen or damage a restoration. Carefully follow all guidelines provided by our office, and, most importantly, practice good oral hygiene. Additional instructions following various types of treatment are listed below. Please click on the below topics for detailed instructions. In the event of an emergency please call our office. If you are experiencing a serious or life threatening emergency, please call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room.


Following Tooth Preparation: Sensitivity and tenderness of the tooth and surrounding gums is common for the first day or two after a tooth has been prepared for a restoration. If the tenderness or sensitivity lasts longer than this, please contact our office. If anesthesia is used, avoid chewing, biting, and eating until the numbness wears off.

For Temporary Restorations: Eat softer foods, and avoid foods that are particularly crunchy, chewy, or hard. Carefully clean around the restoration, brushing and flossing daily. Be gentle when flossing, taking extra care not to loosen the temporary restoration. Slowly pulling the floss out by one end can help avoid putting too much pressure on the temporary. If the temporary restoration becomes loose or breaks, please call us immediately.

After Final Restoration Placement: Do not eat or drink for at least an hour after cementation. Avoid chewing on hard, crunchy, or sticky foods for 24 hours in order to give time for the cement to fully bond. Mild sensitivity to hot or cold foods is not unusual and should dissipate after a few weeks. If sensitivity lasts more than six weeks, please let the office know.

Ongoing Care: Proper care of your restoration includes brushing your teeth after every meal and snack, and flossing at least once a day before bedtime. Rinsing your mouth with water or mouthwash with also help to remove any additional particles. Routine cleanings and check-ups with us will also help keep restorations in optimal health.

Please call our office if you are in pain or have any questions regarding your treatment.

Do not eat or chew until any numbness from anesthesia has worn off. If you are supervising a child who has had treatment, make certain that they are not eating or chewing while numb. Please make sure they do not bite their lips or tongue as doing so can cause serious injury to their soft tissue. Avoid sticky, crunchy, or hard foods for 24 hours.

Sensitivity to cold and heat, as well as any soreness, should not last more than a few days. Please call our office if you experience pain or discomfort for more than a few days.

Scaling and root planing therapy includes removing tartar and bacterial plaque from the root surface below the gum line. This helps reduce inflammation and infection and improves the depth of periodontal pockets, therefore allowing more efficient flossing and brushing.

You may experience some cold and heat sensitivity for several days following this procedure. Do not eat, drink, chew or consume hot foods or beverages until the numbness has worn off following anesthetic. Avoid foods and are extremely cold, hot or spicy for the first 24 hours. Do not consume alcoholic beverages or smoke for at least 48 hours. Some bleeding following a deep cleaning is normal, but if you experience excessive bleeding please call our office.

You can take ibuprofen or acetaminophen according to the instructions on the label or those provided by your doctor as needed. A warm salt water rinse can be helpful. Brush and floss gently following a deep cleaning, resuming normal brushing and flossing when the soreness is gone.

Follow any other instructions provided by our office on your visit. Please take all medications as prescribed.

Try not to eat or drink for the first hour following your treatment. Also avoid feeling around your tooth with your tongue. This is to allow the temporary filling sufficient time to harden. Once you resume eating and drinking, be careful when chewing or biting on the treatment area until your permanent restoration is placed. Please keep the treated area clean by gently brushing and flossing regularly.

If the temporary falls out, please contact us.  If your temporary falls out after office hours, you may purchase some temporary filling material from a pharmacy and follow the included instructions to cover the area until you can be seen in our office.

Some discomfort is normal following root canal therapy.  In some cases, the tooth and surrounding tissue may be sore for a few weeks following treatment. If you were given any prescriptions, please have them filled promptly and take as directed.  If no prescriptions were given, you may wish to take an anti-inflammatory or Tylenol; you may also alternate the two medicines.

If you are unable to achieve adequate pain control, please call our office.

Teeth are more susceptible to staining after bleaching treatments. It is best to avoid dark-colored food or beverages that can stain your teeth such as berries, cola or other dark sodas, red wine, coffee and tea, tobacco and ketchup, soy or other dark sauces. Anything that can stain your clothes can also stain your teeth.

Using Your Custom Trays:

Follow the instructions given by our office, placing the bleaching gel in the center of each tooth position on the tray so that the gel will rest against the front surfaces of the teeth once it is placed in your mouth. Wear trays for the recommended time. Rinse the mouth and gently remove any gel remaining on your teeth with a soft bristle toothbrush. Clean the trays.