Stiches: The why’s and how’s of oral surgery aftercare

Stiches: The why’s and how’s of oral surgery aftercare
July 29th, 2016 | Blog | No comments

We already talked a little about oral surgery last tuesday, but we still have to talk about stiches. Oral surgeries, regardless of how minor they may be, may require an incision; that is, the dentist may need to cut the tissue to work the area. If the wound is big enough, we need to suture it in order to facilitate the healing process and to prevent further bleeding; that’s where stiches come in.

The aftercare changes a little depending on what kind of stiches where used.  There are two kinds of stiches; non-dissolvable, which the dentist will remove after the wound has closed; and dissolvable, which naturally dissolve with the saliva. While some professionals may prefer one over the other for personal reasons, in truth, they are both perfectly safe and neither has been shown to be better than the other. Still, you should know what kind of stiches is used in order to prepare for the following days.

Regardless of the type; you must take good care of your wound; the dentist will probably tell you to take antibiotics; and you need to be rigorous, use an alarm if you are forgetful.

Also, you need to keep your mouth clean, but you have to be very gentle with the area; if you are forceful you’ll end up ripping the stiches and reopening the wounds; use a soft brush and try to clean around the area, avoid direct contact with the stiches.

Avoid hard food, or rather, eat soft food that easily dissolves; don’t chew with the afflicted area; don’t spit, and if you must, just let the saliva naturally fall from your mouth. Also, don’t rinse, you may use mouthwash, but only take a zip and very gently rub your mouth.

Maybe you may feel threads, but resist the urge of touching them with your tongue or fingers, just don’t pay attention to them, and you will forget about them eventually.

Finally, if the stiches where non-dissolvable, the dentist will set a future appointment to take a look at the healing process, and to remove the stiches, the experience, while no painful, can feel a little weird.

On the other hand, if the stiches were dissolvable, they will naturally break down over time; you will feel them coming off, and sooner or later they will dissolve on their own; you don’t need to remove them, as they will naturally disappear.