After a Gum Graft

On the Day of the Graft

  • Apply ice to the affected side of the face at regular intervals (10 minutes every hour).
  • Do not touch the dressing affixed to the surgical site.
  • Food and drink should be soft and cool (lukewarm).


  • Rinsing your mouth or spitting, which could trigger or aggravate bleeding. We recommend that you use the prescribed mouthwash on the first evening, taking care to let it sit in your mouth for a while.
  • Drinking with a straw; the suction could dislodge the blood clot that promotes healing.
  • Eating before all trace of the anesthesia disappears (chew on the opposite side).
  • Smoking or drinking alcohol.
  • Consuming hard foods and hot beverages (choose cool and soft foods instead).
  • Brushing your teeth near the surgical site until the stitches are removed.
  • Sleeping flat (instead, sleep on 2 or 3 stacked pillows).
  • Engaging in intense physical activities (rest is mandatory!)


For the first 24 to 72 hours, take an acetaminophen- (Tylenol) or ibuprofen-based drug (Motrin, Advil), or the prescribed pain medication, taking care to avoid aspirin.


  • From the day after the operation until complete healing, rinse your mouth three times a day with the prescribed mouthwash or with warm water and salt (2 ml or 1/2 tsp. of salt in 250 ml or 1 cup of water).
  • Eat sensibly. If chewing is difficult, drink liquids instead. .
  • If your wound is covered with a dressing, the dressing will be removed at the same time as the non-dissolvable stitches during your follow-up visit. The dressing may fall off before the visit, which could cause bleeding. Simply place a damp compress on the surgical site and apply pressure.

Probable Symptoms

  • Swelling will be most prominent on the second and third day after the operation and will then gradually diminish.
  • Bruises may appear on your face but will fade after five to seven days.
  • The presence of blood may affect the taste of your saliva for the first few days after treatment.
  • You will probably have difficulty in opening your mouth. This problem should subside after four or five days.
  • If you were prescribed antibiotics, continue taking them for the full period indicated, even if you are not experiencing symptoms. However, stop the treatment in case of diarrhea and contact us.
  • After a few days, you will feel better and be able to resume your normal activities.

In case of persistent pain, profuse bleeding, a reaction to medication or swelling lasting 2-3 consecutive days, or if you have any questions, please contact us at 514-376-4911.