After Dental Implant Surgery
After Placement Of Dental Implants
Immediately following dental implant surgery, it’s essential you refrain from disturbing the surgical area since there will be a metal healing abutment protruding through the gingival (gum). This includes avoiding rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery.
Bleeding will most likely occur after dental implant surgery. Many of our patients experience some bleeding or redness in the saliva for 24-48 hours. Excessive bleeding (your mouth fills up rapidly with blood) can be controlled by biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. If bleeding persists, please call our office for further instructions.
Swelling is a normal occurrence after dental implant surgery. To minimize swelling, we suggest using an apply a cold pack, ice bag, or a bag of frozen vegetables to the cheek adjacent to the surgical area. Apply the ice continuously, as often as possible, for the first 36 hours.
We inform our patients to drink plenty of cold fluids following dental implant, while avoiding hot liquid or solid food. Nourishing soft food and liquids can be eaten on the day of surgery. You may return to your normal diet as soon as possible, unless otherwise directed by our oral surgeons.
Good oral hygiene is critical to ensure successful healing. On the day after surgery, you must use the prescribed Oral Rinse Peridex twice daily, after breakfast and before bed. Be sure to rinse for at least 30 seconds then spit it out. We recommend the patient use warm salt-water rinses (one teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) at least four to five times a day, especially after eating to minimize the risk of infection. You may brush teeth following dental implant surgery, but be gentle around the surgical area. We advise to exercise care and not to brush too vigorously.
Smoking will delay healing, cause discomfort and an increased chance of developing painful dry sockets. We strongly discourage smoking of any kind during the healing phase following dental implant surgery.
We advise our patients to take the prescribed antibiotics as directed to help prevent infection. Unfortunately, most patients will experience some level of discomfort following any kind of oral surgery. While this is unavoidable, you should begin taking pain medication as soon as you feel the local anesthetic wearing off. The effects of pain medication vary by each individual.
For moderate pain, one to two Tylenol or Extra Strength Tylenol may be taken every three to four hours. Ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) may be taken instead of Tylenol. Ibuprofen, bought over the counter comes in 200 mg tablets. Two to three tablets may be taken every three to four hours as needed for pain. For severe pain, the prescribed medication should be taken as directed. Do not take any of the above medication if you are allergic, or have been instructed by your oral surgeon not to take it.
Activities After Dental Implant Surgery
Couch or bed rest is the best thing to do for the first day following dental implant surgery to promote healing. We highly recommend our patients keep physical activities to a minimum for the subsequent days after. Exercise or other strenuous activities should be avoided at least 3-4 days following surgery, as it can cause throbbing, bleeding, or pain at the surgical site. Keep in mind that your normal caloric and fluid intake is reduced. This may weaken you and further limit your ability to exercise or perform your normal activities.
As a reminder, partial dentures, flippers, or full dentures should not be used after surgery for at least ten days. This would have been discussed during the preoperative consultation with your oral surgeon.
If you have any additional questions about post-dental implant care, don’t hesitate to contact our team at the Oral & Facial Surgery Center of Puyallup for more information. Our dedicated staff is available as resource for any questions or concerns you may have about oral surgery.