Recovering from Gum Graft Surgery

Finally, let’s talk recovery from gum tissue graft surgery. You will not have to be hospitalized or anything like that; you can go home immediately after your surgery, but you will need a ride home.

Until the area has healed, do not brush or floss the gum lines that were affected. Instead, rinse your mouth with a special, dentist-prescribed mouthwash to clean the area and help prevent plaque buildup. Additionally, your periodontist may prescribe an antibiotic to cull the risk of infection.

For at least a week post-gum graft surgery, eat only soft, cool foods. For example, you can eat eggs, gelatin, yogurt, cottage cheese, pasta, ice cream, and well-cooked (super soft) vegetables. Definitely keep raw vegetables and crispy fruits, such as apples and pears, out of your diet until you are completely healed.

How much pain you will experience will vary according to the type of gum graft procedure you had. If you didn’t have any tissue from the roof of your mouth removed, then you will most likely have very little pain, if any at all. If you did have palate tissue removed, you may be uncomfortable for a few days. Many patients have described the feeling as similar to burning the roof of their mouths from hot pizza, but fortunately, the mouth tissue tends to heal very quickly. Your periodontist may prescribe pain medication, but if not, over-the-counter anti-inflammatories–such as ibuprofen–can help relieve the pain.

Your mouth may not heal completely for up to two weeks, but you should be able to return to your normal routines the day after surgery. Take heart in knowing that the pain and recovery time for gum graft procedures is far better than it is getting your wisdom teeth removed.

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