Healing Smiles: Post-Op Instructions After Gum Contouring

Undergoing a gum contouring procedure at Palmetto Family and Cosmetic Dentistry is a transformative step toward achieving the smile you’ve always wanted. This procedure, aimed at reshaping the gum line to enhance the appearance of your smile, requires careful post-operative care to ensure a smooth and speedy recovery. Please follow the following comprehensive instructions to optimize your healing process and results.

Immediate Aftercare

  • Rest: Prioritize rest immediately following your procedure. Elevate your head with pillows to reduce swelling.
  • Ice Packs: Apply ice packs to your face in the treatment area for 15 minutes on and 15 minutes off to help minimize swelling during the first 24-48 hours.
  • Bleeding: A small amount of bleeding is average. If bleeding occurs, apply gentle pressure with a moistened gauze pad or a tea bag for about 20-30 minutes. Contact us if the bleeding is persistent or excessive. 

Pain Management

  • Medications: Take prescribed pain medications as directed. Over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen (Tylenol) can also be effective. Avoid aspirin and ibuprofen initially, as they can increase bleeding.

Oral Hygiene

  • Gentle Cleaning: Avoid brushing and flossing in the treated area until it has healed sufficiently. We may recommend a special mouthwash to help control plaque during this period.
  • Rinsing: After 24 hours, gently rinse your mouth with a warm saltwater solution (1/2 teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) several times a day to help reduce discomfort and cleanse the area.

Eating and Drinking

  • Soft Diet: For the first few days after your procedure, stick to a soft diet. Foods like yogurt, soup, applesauce, and smoothies are ideal. Avoid hot foods and beverages initially, as they can increase blood flow and swelling.
  • Hydration: Stay well-hydrated with water. Avoid alcoholic beverages, as they can delay the healing process.
  • Avoid Certain Foods: Avoid spicy, acidic, or hard and crunchy foods until your gums have healed completely. 


  • Limit Physical Activity: To minimize swelling and bleeding, reduce physical activity for the first 24-48 hours after the procedure.

Follow-Up Care

  • Monitoring Healing: It’s normal for the gums to have minor swelling, redness, and discomfort as they heal. However, if you experience significant pain, swelling that worsens after the first few days, or any signs of infection (such as pus or an unusual odor), please get in touch with us immediately.
  • Appointment: Attend all scheduled follow-up appointments so we can monitor your healing and the results of the gum contouring procedure.

Long-Term Care

  • Oral Hygiene: Once healed, resume regular brushing and flossing to maintain the health of your gums and overall oral hygiene. This will also help to prolong the results of your gum contouring procedure.
  • Regular Dental Visits: Continue routine dental check-ups and cleanings at Palmetto Family and Cosmetic Dentistry. These visits allow us to maintain your oral health and monitor the condition of your gums.

Following these detailed post-operative instructions can ensure a comfortable recovery and lasting results from your gum contouring procedure. Remember, your care and attention to these guidelines are crucial for the success of your treatment. 

Should you have any questions or concerns during your recovery, please get in touch with us at Palmetto Family and Cosmetic Dentistry. We are dedicated to supporting you throughout your recovery and beyond as you enjoy the benefits of a more balanced and beautiful smile.