EATING, DRINKING and SMOKING: As soon as the patient is able, encourage fluid intake beginning with clear liquids (water, Gatorade, soda, fruit juice and popsicles) and advance as tolerated to a regular diet. Encourage as much liquid intake as tolerated to reduce the occurrence of nausea and/or vomiting, a common side effect of anesthesia. If vomiting occurs, do not become alarmed, this is normal. Wait 1 hour to let the stomach calm down before trying again with water. Keep all liquids and food at room temperature. Hot liquid and food may cause bleeding, cold items may not be tolerated due to pain, but will be helpful if swelling is expected. The patient should not be allowed to sleep for prolonged periods of time without urinating. For adults: NO ALCOHOL and NO SMOKING for the first 24 hours.
ACTIVITY: The patient must not drive or engage in moderate to high physical activity for 24 hours or until the effects of the anesthesia have subsided completely. Do not plan to drive a vehicle or operate potentially dangerous equipment for 24 hours after anesthesia. Judgment may be impaired during this time as well; the patient should not be allowed to make any critical decisions until fully recovered from the anesthesia. For children, DO NOT allow them to swim, bike ride, or play with other children until the next day.
SLEEPINESS: The patient may be sleepy for a time after anesthesia. The duration of drowsiness varies with the depth of the anesthesia and the duration of the treatment. To avoid falling off a bed or sofa, you may want to place a blanket on the floor and allow the patient to sleep there. All post operative patients should sleep on their side supported by a pillow behind their back. This will help to maintain an adequate airway during sleep and if vomiting occurs. The patient’s chin should be an extended position away from the chest. This will also aid in keeping the airway open and facilitate effortless breathing. A responsible adult should arouse the patient every 1-2 hours for the first 4-6 hours after anesthesia to ensure a smooth recovery.
PAIN or FEVER: A pain reliever will be given via the I.V. during the procedure which should last 5-7 hours. Supplemental oral pain relievers should be obtained through your Dentist. Muscle aches; tired jaw muscles and a sore throat are common after anesthesia and usually resolve by themselves within 24-36 hours. Encourage deep breathing and coughing to clear lungs of any accumulated secretions. For children: a fever of up to 101 degrees F may develop for the first 12 hours. Tylenol elixir every 3 to 4 hours as directed, with plenty of liquids will alleviate this condition.
EVENING PHONE NUMBER: Be sure to provide your anesthesia provider with a phone number where they can reach the patient and care provider later that day to check on the progress of recovery and to answer any questions you may have.
SEEK ADVICE: If vomiting persists beyond 4 hours, or temperature remains over 101 degrees F for more than 24 hours, contact your anesthesia provider or call the main office @ 508.692.9548