7 Tips to Speed Up Your Jaw Surgery Recovery

It is normal to feel nervous about surgery, especially jaw surgery, since it impacts how and what you eat. However, your nervousness may subside a little if you know what to expect. In this blog, we will share the 7 best tips for jaw surgery recovery to help you get back to doing what you enjoy, such as dining at your favorite restaurant, as soon as possible.

  1. Turn Your Meals into Drinks
    After jaw surgery, try to enjoy your meals differently. Consume drinkable or very soft foods to minimize jaw use and discomfort. Your teeth will have small rubber bands for 2 weeks, followed by larger bands. After this, you can start eating soft foods.
  2. Get Plenty of Rest
    It is compulsory to get plenty of rest after any jaw surgery. So, rest at home and avoid strenuous activities to protect your jawbone and not disrupt the healing process. Try not to talk too much on the first day of the surgery. Eat small portions of food 6 times a day instead of 3.
    Avoid spitting to protect the wound. Healing takes 8-12 weeks, so be very cautious.
  3. Cold and Hot Compress
    It is completely normal to have swelling and bruising following jaw surgery. Do not panic. Simply apply an ice pack to your jaw for 30 minutes, then rest for 15 minutes, repeating the process for 24-48 hours. If you notice pus on the surgical site or have a fever, then it is best to call your surgeon. After a week, you can use warm heat to reduce swelling.
  4. Keep Your Head in an Elevated Position
    Another great tip to reduce facial swelling after jaw surgery is to keep your head elevated. Avoid lying flat; instead, sit or recline during the day. At night, use 2 or 3 pillows to keep your head elevated. This promotes proper blood flow and reduces swelling.
  5. Jaw Exercises
    Avoid doing specific exercises for the first 10 days following jaw surgery. During this time, only light chewing is recommended. After 10 days, you can open and close your jaw and move it forward, backward, and side to side. If you experience any discomfort, you can use moist heat.
    By the fourth week, gently stretch your jaw using your finger to increase jaw opening.
  6. Gradually Incorporate Solid Foods into Your Diet
    You can gradually start incorporating solid foods into your diet as your surgeon allows, focusing on easy-to-chew, nutritious options like:

    • Yogurt.
    • Mashed potatoes.
    • Scrambled eggs.
    • Ground meat.
    • Soft chicken.
    • Applesauce.
    • Soft bread.
    • Cooked vegetables.
  7. Maintain Oral Hygiene
    Keep your mouth clean and infection-free to ensure your surgical wound heals well. For the first week after the surgery, use a soft-bristled toothbrush. Some bleeding is normal for the first 1-2 weeks but should stop shortly. If bleeding continues, contact your oral surgeon right away.

Closing Remarks

After undergoing jaw surgery, it is important to take extra care of your jaw for a speedy recovery. Paying attention to your diet, maintaining proper oral hygiene, and keeping your head in an elevated position is crucial. By following these post-op tips, you can help speed up your recovery from jaw surgery.

If you believe that you may need jaw surgery but are unsure, please consult the specialists at Rock Creek Oral Surgery Specialists by calling (832) 930-7801.


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