Getting Back to Normal: Activities for Kids in the Final Stages of Healing

Getting Back to Normal: Activities for Kids in the Final Stages of Healing

June 1, 2024

It can be challenging for both children and parents to handle the final stages of healing after oral surgery. That’s why offering guidance and support is important during this time. In this discussion, we’ll explore ways to reduce discomfort, maintain oral hygiene, and identify signs of complications for a smoother recovery journey.

The Immediate Post-Surgery Stage: What to Expect

Immediately after oral surgery, children may experience various effects, such as swelling, discomfort, and mild pain. Parents need to understand that these symptoms are normal and temporary. Reassure your child that these feelings will diminish as they continue to heal. Provide them with soft foods and fluids to keep them comfortable and hydrated. Gentle reminders to avoid touching the surgical site will help prevent irritation and promote faster healing.

Managing Pain and Discomfort: Strategies for Easing Discomfort During Recovery

  • Cold Compresses: Usage of cold compresses or ice packs to the outside of the face can greatly help reduce swelling and numb the area, relieving discomfort. Encourage your child to use these compresses for short periods, taking breaks to prevent skin irritation.
  • Over-the-Counter Pain Relief: Consult a pediatric dentist who can tell your child about safe over-the-counter pain relief options. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen can help take away pain and reduce inflammation when used as directed.
  • Soft Diet: Always encourage your child to stick to a soft diet during recovery to minimize discomfort while chewing. Offer foods such as mashed potatoes, yogurt, smoothies, and soups that are easy to swallow and won’t irritate the surgical site.
  • Hydration: Ensure your child stays well-hydrated by encouraging them to have plenty of fluids throughout the day. Water, diluted fruit juices, and herbal teas are excellent choices to keep them hydrated and promote healing.
  • Distraction Techniques: Engage your child in relaxing and enjoyable activities to help take their mind off any discomfort they may be experiencing. Reading books, watching movies, or playing quiet games can provide required distraction and promote relaxation.

The First Week of Recovery: Diet and Oral Hygiene Tips

  • Soft Foods: Offer your child a variety of soft and nutritious foods that are convenient to chew and swallow. Opt for options such as mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs, yogurt, applesauce, and smoothies to provide essential nutrients without causing discomfort.
  • Avoid Hard or Crunchy Foods: Encourage your child to avoid hard or crunchy foods that may irritate the surgical site or cause pain when chewing. Avoid chips, nuts, raw vegetables, and tough meats until fully recovered.
  • Gentle Oral Hygiene: Help your child maintain good oral hygiene by gently brushing their teeth with a soft-bristled toothbrush and mild toothpaste. Avoid vigorous brushing around the surgical area to prevent irritation and promote healing.
  • Rinsing with Saline Solution: Encourage your child to rinse their mouth with a saline solution several times daily just to keep the surgical area clean and reduce the risk of infection. Prepare the solution by mixing salt with warm water and instruct your child to swish it around their mouth before spitting it out.
  • Follow Post-Op Instructions: Ensure your child follows any post-operative instructions provided by their children’s dentist in Brighton, CO. This may include specific dietary restrictions, oral hygiene protocols, and recommended medications to aid their recovery process.

Staying Vigilant: Signs of Complications and When to Seek Medical Attention

  • Excessive Bleeding: If your child experiences persistent bleeding that does not subside with gentle pressure, it may indicate a complication. Contact the emergency pediatric dentist immediately for further guidance.
  • Severe Pain: Severe or increasing pain not relieved by over-the-counter medications may indicate infection or other complications. Seek medical attention quickly to address the underlying issue.
  • Signs of Infection: Watch out for the signs of infection, like swelling, redness, warmth, or discharge around the surgical site. Contact children’s dentists for Kids for evaluation and treatment if you notice any of these symptoms.
  • Fever: A fever may indicate an underlying infection or inflammation. Monitor your child’s temperature regularly and consult a healthcare professional if they develop a fever above 100.4°F (38°C).

Schedule an Appointment with Us Today

As your child progresses through the final stages of healing, it is important to schedule a follow-up appointment with Galaxy Smiles for Kids. Our pediatric dentists in Brighton, CO, will assess your child’s progress in recovery and address any lingering concerns. We’re dedicated to supporting your child’s oral health journey every step of the way.


Navigating the oral surgery recovery stage can be challenging for both children and parents. By providing gentle care and emotional support and following the guidance of pediatric dentists, you can help your child get back to normal activities with confidence. Patience and positivity are critical; normalcy and comfort will return with proper care.

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