We all want to heal quickly after oral surgery so it’s important to prepare beforehand for an optimal outcome!

While most oral surgeries are outpatient procedures, it’s still important to take measures to ensure a healthy recovery in which you can heal quickly with less downtime. 

No matter the type of surgery you’re undergoing, it’s important that it be approached in the same way and that you follow all the pre-surgery directions provided by your oral surgeon to avoid any risks or complications.

At the Alaska Center For Oral + Facial Surgery, we provide innovative oral surgery practices with highly successful outcomes, and together, when the patients do their part in the pre- and post-surgery directions, the outcome only gets better! Join us in today’s post as we review the importance of preparing for anesthesia before your oral surgery. 

Anesthesia Preparations Before Oral Surgery

Support your recovery by making a few preparations before surgery! Oral surgery can be scary, intimidating, and drive our anxiety wild, so it’s important to get educated on your surgery and trust that the oral surgeons have your back! Let’s explore a few things you can do to better prepare you for going under!

Connect with your oral surgeon.

Many times people get nervous and intimidated around their oral surgeons and unfortunately clam up when it comes time to review the surgery. 

The first thing to know is that your oral surgeon stands behind you — they want to improve the function and aesthetics of your smile and understand where you’re at in the process. If you’re nervous or scared, communicate with them, and always come armed with questions before the appointment. 

These appointments are as much about discussing the surgery as they are about building rapport, so don’t leave anything out — discuss it all. This is especially important when it comes to your health history and anesthesia. Ensure that you disclose all of your medications (even supplements) this way the oral surgeon can identify any risks or complications before the surgery. 

It’s also important to ask about the specific kind of anesthesia that’s being used or discuss an alternative in case one might work better for you. For example, if you know you have high anxiety, an oral surgeon may have a better recommendation. 

Connect with insurance. 

While AOFS is excellent at advocating for patients and relaying insurance information, it’s important to always follow up with them if it’s unclear to you. 

You’ll want to make sure that not only the oral surgery procedure is approved, in addition to the anesthesia, if it strays from the traditional standard. 

The oral surgery practice is a great resource and they’re very willing to assist you or provide options if the case is rejected or you don’t have medical insurance. 

Organize transportation. 

In the hustle and bustle of your surgery, you get a wave of information and sometimes you forget the details of arranging transportation! Do this right now! Even if you’re going in for a minor dental procedure, sometimes we can underestimate the effects anesthesia can have.

The standard is to always have a friend or family member take you home, even the lightest anesthesia can impair your ability to operate a vehicle. One important note is the general recommendation of avoiding driving for 24-48 hours after being under general anesthesia. 

Prepare foods you can eat!

Whether you live alone or have a household of tiny helpers, preparing food you can eat after surgery makes for a more effortless recovery, at least in the first couple of days! 

Oral surgery impacts your whole mouth and the ability to eat certain foods. Typically you’re going to be sore and tired after surgery, so the ability to quickly reheat something is a lifesaver. 

Focus on soft, easy foods such as soups, applesauce, oatmeal, smoothies, and bone broth. 

Follow the smoking, drinking, and eating rules. 

Your oral surgeon will provide you with pre-op directions to guide you in your use of foods, drinks, and smoking before surgery — be sure you comply 100%!

As a rule, you should avoid any kind of beverage (even water) eight to 12 hours before surgery and only eat a light meal a couple of hours beforehand. Smoking should also cease 12 hours before surgery and 24 hours afterward.  

Plan what you’ll wear.

Depending on the oral surgery clinic you may have to change into a gown but for most outpatient surgeries, as long as you wear comfortable clothes, you should be fine. Here are a couple of considerations to keep in mind such as:

  • Wearing a short-sleeved shirt in case you receive an IV
  • Do not wear jewelry
  • Avoid contact lenses
  • Do not wear heavy makeup or lipstick
  • Avoid strong perfumes and colognes
  • Wear your hair back

Reschedule if you’re sick.

This is one of the biggest factors to consider, and it’s one that is often missed. If you are sick, be considerate to the staff and reschedule to avoid infecting others. It can also complicate the procedure if you have clogged sinuses or are constantly sneezing. 

There are many ways to better prepare for your overall procedure in addition to preparing for anesthesia, and that includes connecting with your oral surgeon, arranging rides, and adhering to the food and drink guidelines.

It’s important to know about the effects of anesthesia and what can potentially impact your recovery. 

For more information about our oral surgery procedures and to learn more about our clinic, connect with us today.