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Postoperative Dental Care

at VK Pediatric Dentistry

After your child undergoes a dental procedure, there are things you can do at home to make sure they heal comfortably. We’ll go over all of these tips when you come to see us, but if your child (or you) need a little reminder, we’ve included them here for your convenience. If you have any questions about what to do or something doesn't feel right, don’t hesitate to call us.


  • Depending on the location of the procedure, the tongue (lower jaw), teeth (upper or lower jaw), lip, and surrounding tissue will be numb or asleep

  • Chewing, scratching, sucking, or playing with the numb lip, tongue, or cheek can cause irritation from minor to severe swelling and abrasions to the tissue

  • Monitor your child closely for approximately two hours following the appointment. It is often wise to keep your child on a liquid or soft diet until the anesthetic has worn off

Image by Andre Guerra
Image by frank mckenna
  • Do not rinse the mouth for several hours and avoid excessive spitting

  • Some bleeding is to be expected. If unusual or sustained bleeding occurs, place cotton gauze, a moistened washcloth, or tea bag firmly over the extraction area and bite down or hold in place for 15 minutes. Repeat if necessary

  • Maintain a soft diet for a day or two, or until the child feels comfortable eating normally again

  • Do not drink a carbonated beverage for the remainder of the day

  • Avoid strenuous exercise or physical activity for several hours after the extraction

  • Do not use a straw for 48 hours

Nitrous Oxide

If nitrous oxide & oxygen (laughing gas & oxygen) is administered during the appointment, we will always run a 100% oxygen flush after the procedure. Nitrous is one of the safest, most effective sedation methods for kids. Although rare, it's possible some kids can feel nauseous or dizzy during or after the appointment so we recommend limited activity for the first few hours after an appointment if there are any signs of drowsiness. 

Image by Valeria Zoncoll
Sealants, Fillings, Crowns, Space Maintainers
Image by Aw Creative
  • Although many of these options can last years, proper maintenance is required. Parents need to be extra vigilant with proper brushing and flossing and regular visits. 

  • Keep your child away from sticky, chewy, hard, or crunchy foods such as gum, caramels, Milk Duds, licorice, gummy bears, jelly beans, beef jerky, nuts, popcorn, ice, hard candies, jaw breakers, and corn on the cob.

  • Tell your child to avoid putting their fingers in their mouth.

  • If anything comes loose or breaks, call our office.

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