After Placement of Dental Implants
Home Instructions After Dental Implant Surgery
Do not disturb the wound. Avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery. Many times, the dental implant is placed so that it is completely hidden under your gum during the healing phase. Other times, there will be a metal healing abutment protruding through the gingival (gum) tissue.
Some bleeding or redness in the saliva is normal for 24 hours. Excessive bleeding (your mouth fills up rapidly with blood) can be controlled by biting on folded gauze pads placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. You may need to change the gauze packs several times the first day. If bleeding continues, please call for further instructions.
Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling, apply an ice bag, or a plastic bag filled with ice on a towel on the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the cold pack continuously, as often as possible, for the first 24-36 hours.
Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid hot liquids or food the first 1-2 days. Soft food and liquids should be eaten on the day of surgery. Return to a normal diet when you are comfortable unless otherwise directed.
For moderate pain, one or two tablets of Tylenol or an Extra Strength Tylenol tablet may be taken every four hours or ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil) two to three 200 mg tablets may be taken every four to six hours.
For severe pain, take the tablets prescribed as directed. The prescribed pain medicine will make you groggy and will slow down your reflexes. Do not drive an automobile or work around machinery. Avoid alcoholic beverages. Pain or discomfort following surgery should subside more and more every day. If pain persists, it may require attention and you should call the office.
Be sure to take the prescribed antibiotics as directed to help prevent infection.
Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing. Beginning the night of surgery or the following morning, use the prescribed Peridex Oral Rinse twice daily. The best way to use the prescribed rinse is as follows: After breakfast and teeth brushing, rinse for 60 seconds then spit it out. Try not to eat, drink or rinse with water for at least an hour. This will allow the rinse solution to remain on your gums and control oral bacteria. Do the same thing in the evening before bed, after you have brushed your teeth. Warm salt-water rinses (one teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) should be used several times a day, as well, especially after meals. Use your toothbrush to clean any exposed metal components. This is definitely recommended because it will keep food and germs off the implants. Be gentle initially when brushing the surgical areas.
“Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing.”
Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. If you are considering exercise, throbbing or bleeding may occur. If this occurs, you should discontinue exercising. Keep in mind that you are probably not taking normal nourishment. You may feel weak for the first few days so you should limit your exercise.
Wearing Your Prosthesis
Partial dentures, flippers, or full dentures should not be used immediately after surgery and for at least ten days. This was discussed in the preoperative consultation. Dr. Tom can answer any specific questions about this after your surgery.