07 Nov The Ultimate Guide to Jaw Surgery Recovery
Whether it’s to correct an overbite, underbite, or open bite, you might be feeling anxious about jaw surgery recovery. However, focusing on some simple changes to your routine will lead to a much smoother recovery experience. Plus, you can always contact your dentist if you have any questions as you heal. To better understand what to expect during recovery, this is the guide you should consider.
Follow Your Dentist’s Instructions
The most critical advice is to follow your dentist’s instructions regarding oral surgery prep and recovery. You won’t be going into jaw surgery recovery without clear guidelines of what you should and shouldn’t do. Place these instructions where you can check them at any time, and be sure to extensively review them prior to your procedure, so you can ask any questions you might have.
Rest After Jaw Surgery Recovery
As with any type of surgery, you need time to recover. Plan to do as little as possible after your surgery, which might include taking off work for a few days. You can gradually increase activity as you feel better, but still be extremely gentle with your jaw and mouth as everything heals. Plan to take it easy for around three weeks. You’ll also want to stay home for the first week completely.
Limit What You Eat and Drink
Probably the hardest thing to adjust to during jaw surgery recovery involves eating and drinking. Usually, for at least the first ten days, you’re limited to liquids and have food restrictions. For the next roughly four to six weeks, you’ll want to stick with soft foods only so as not to stress a healing jaw with unnecessary chewing. Throughout the recovery period, you’ll need to start with smaller bites and increase over time as your jaw adjusts.
Limiting what you drink to water and fruit juices, such as apple juice, will make your recovery a little easier. Avoid coffee, sodas, alcohol, and drinking anything through a straw.
Prepare for Swelling
Swelling is common after jaw surgery, so don’t be alarmed. However, having cold and warm compresses ready helps reduce the pain and swelling. Cold compresses work well, especially during the first week. Then, switch to warm compresses.
Also, add an extra pillow or two to your bed. Keeping your head elevated helps reduce swelling and increases blood flow which aids in recovery.
Understand Your Recovery Time
Recovering from jaw surgery takes time. So, be patient. It could take upwards of 12 weeks to fully recover, depending on the nature of your oral procedure. However, if you prioritize self-care and prepare for proper healing, it’ll be much easier and over before you know it. And, when it’s all over, you’ll get to start enjoying your life even more without jaw issues.
Want to know if jaw surgery is right for you? Find out more about corrective jaw surgery and if you might be a candidate.