Congratulations on completing the first step in restoring your teeth with dental implants. As with any surgical procedure, you can expect a certain degree of discomfort during the next few days.
Relax as much as possible and avoid all strenuous activities for at least five days following your surgery. If at any time you have a general concern or question, please call our office to speak with a doctor. Below are the post-operative instructions necessary to ensure proper healing.
In most cases, your new teeth will be placed on your dental implants the day following your surgery.
Overnight, the dental laboratory is customizing your teeth to fit upon your implants. Please see your dentist the day following your surgery (or during your arranged appointment) to have your new temporary teeth placed. During your appointment, your dentist will make minor adjustments to the appearance and fit of your teeth to make you comfortable. Remember, these new teeth are only temporary; you will have the final teeth made in 4 months. Take this time to decide what you love about your temporary teeth and make sure to inform your dentist of changes you would like to see for your final teeth (i.e., tooth color, tooth shape, gum color, tooth position, etc.). In some instances, immediate teeth can not be placed upon your new implants for 4–5 months. In this case, we have delivered you a full denture. Please follow our wearing guidelines and hygiene instructions below to ensure proper healing of your implants and gums.
You have been given an antibiotic to prevent infection. Please take this as directed until all of the medication is finished. The pain medication that you have been given should be taken as directed and with a full stomach; otherwise you may experience nausea and vomiting. Do not drive, consume alcoholic beverages, or perform work duties that would put yourself and/or others in danger. If you were prescribed chlorhexidine mouthwash (Peridex™), begin rinsing two days following your treatment. Rinse twice a day for two weeks with nothing to eat or drink for one hour after rinsing.
It is normal to experience mild to moderate swelling, peaking at 48 hours. You can help to decrease swelling by applying an ice bag to the affected area 20 minutes on, 10 minutes off, for 24 hours following your surgery. Sleeping with your head elevated for one week following your surgery also helps reduce swelling.
To help the healing process, for the following week after your surgery, be sure to keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of liquids and be sure to eat foods high in vitamins and protein. No matter if your implants have received teeth or you are wearing temporary dentures, limit your diet to soft foods, such as yogurt, soups, pasta, flaky fish, casseroles, and soft-cooked eggs. If you are wearing a denture, please remove your dentures whenever possible while eating. In situations when removing the dentures is unavoidable, eat foods that are a pureed consistency.
There may be some bleeding or oozing at the implant site, which is normal for 24–48 hours following surgery. If you leave the office with a gauze pack, keep firm, steady pressure on the gauze for approximately one hour following the surgery, then remove. Following the day of your surgery, it is recommended to rinse your mouth with a warm salt water solution (dissolve one teaspoon of salt in one cup of warm water) three to four times a day for the week following your surgery. If you are wearing temporary removable dentures, be sure to remove them after each meal and rinse your mouth in order to clear food debris completely. Studies have shown a decrease in both short and long-term success rates of dental implants in patients who smoke. If you have thought about quitting smoking, now is a good time to do so. Ask the doctors how they can help.
If surgery took place on your top jaw, your doctor made a small opening into your sinuses. To allow proper healing, refrain from blowing your nose for 3 weeks following your surgery. Additionally, if you sneeze, open your mouth to relieve sinus pressure and prevent sinus damage.
We would like to see you 1 week following your surgery and at one-month intervals. During those appointments special attention will be paid towards hygiene of your dental implants, overall nutrition, and any other concerns or questions you may have. If you have any questions between your appointments, please do not hesitate to contact our office.
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