When Bleeding Becomes a Problem After Oral Surgery

Posted on 12/30/2016 by Tessa Smith-Greisch
A woman rising out her mouth with saltwater.
Some bleeding is to be expected after an oral surgery procedure. This is perfectly normal, and will most often stop within the first day or two. But when bleeding becomes a problem, there are few things you should do in order to get it to stop.

Replace the Gauze
Your surgeon will most likely place a gauze pad over the surgical site when your procedure is over. This pad should remain in place for the first hour following. After that hour, if the bleeding still persists, replace it with a clean one. Make sure to keep a firm, but not too hard, pressure on it. This will help the wound to clot.

Rest
Limit your activity, especially for the first 24 hours following your surgery. Too much activity causes your blood to flow faster, inhibiting the ability of your surgical site to clot properly. Sit still or lie down and do things that don't require too much movement. Read a book, do a crossword puzzle, watch a movie. Or, if you are more of a creative type, draw, paint, knit, crochet, or get in touch with your inner child and fill out a coloring book.

Keep Your Head Elevated
While you're resting, keep your head elevated, preferably above the level of your heart. If you're lying down, prop yourself up with a few pillows. This will help to keep the blood pressure from building up in your head and mouth, which can otherwise slow the clotting process.

Salt Water
While you should avoid rinsing your mouth out with anything during the first 24 hours, after that time, you can use a salt water solution. Rinse gently. The salt water will help prevent infection as well as help to stop bleeding.

Call Your Dentist

If bleeding is heavy, and/or persists for longer than your dentist has informed you it would, call the office immediately.

Under normal circumstances, bleeding should not last more than a few hours after surgery, although you may still see tinges of blood mixed in your saliva for the first 24 to 48 hours. After that point, it should stop. If it becomes a problem though, take measures to help it stop, and if nothing works, contact our office immediately.





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