After Placement of Dental Implants
Do not disturb the wound. Avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery. 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 rapidly with blood) can be controlled by biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues profusely, please call for further instructions.
Some swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling, use pillows to elevate the head and apply an ice bag, or a plastic bag or towel filled with ice, on the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the ice continuously, as much as possible, for the first 36 hours. After 72 hours, hot packs may be used to diminish swelling.
Drink plenty of fluids, avoiding hot liquids or foods for the first week. Avoid chewing directly on the implant for the entire four months of healing. Please chew on the opposite side of the mouth.
You should begin taking pain medication as soon as you feel the local anesthetic wearing off. For moderate pain, one or two tablets of Tylenol or Extra Strength Tylenol may be taken every 3-4 hours. Ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) may be taken instead of Tylenol. Ibuprofen bought over the counter comes in 200 mg tablets: 2-3 tablets may be taken four times daily, not to exceed 3200mg daily for an adult. Consult our practice for individuals under 18. Do not take the two medications at the same time.
For severe pain, the prescribed medication should be taken as directed. Be sure to eat or drink something 30 minutes prior to taking the pain medication to avoid an upset stomach. Do not take any of the above medications if you are allergic to them, or have been instructed by your doctor not to take them. Do not drive an automobile or work around machinery while taking narcotic pain medication. 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. The antibiotic is generally taken for a full week following surgery.
Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing. Warm salt water rinses (one teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) should be used at least 4-5 time, especially after meals. Brush your teeth and the healing abutments. Be gentle initially while brushing the surgical areas.
Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery. If you exercise, throbbing or bleeding may occur. If this occurs, you should discontinue exercising. Keep in mind that you are probably not taking in normal nourishment. This may weaken you and further limit your ability to exercise.
Wearing your Prosthesis
Partial dentures, flippers, or full dentures, should not be used immediately after surgery for at least 10 days, as discussed in the pre-operative consultation.