After Placement of Dental Implants

Do not disturb the wound. Avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery. There may be a metal healing abutment protruding through the gingival (gum) tissue.

Bleeding

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 a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues please call for further instructions.

Swelling

Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling, apply an ice pack to the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the ice continuously, as much as possible, for the first 48 hours.  Be sure to protect your skin from direct contact with the ice. Keep your head elevated for the first 2-3 nights. This will help reduce swelling and discomfort. Extra pillows or a recliner chair will help.

Diet

Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid hot liquids or food. Soft food and liquids should be eaten on the day of surgery. Return to a normal diet as soon as possible unless otherwise directed. You should not chew over the area where your implant(s) was/were placed until your last follow-up visit (usually 2-3 months). Liquids may be augmented with canned or powdered supplements. You may chew on the opposite side if only one surgical site was used. Early use (loading) of the implant site can lead to loss of the implant. The use of a straw should be avoided during the first 3 weeks after surgery.

Pain

You should begin taking pain medication as soon as you feel the local anesthetic wearing off, with a glass or water and/or a meal to prevent nausea. For moderate pain, 1 or 2 Tylenol or Extra Strength Tylenol may be taken every 4 hours. Ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) may be taken instead of Tylenol. Ibuprofen bought over the counter comes in 200 mg tablets; 2 to 3 tablets may be taken every 4 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 doctor not to take it. Report any adverse reactions to your surgeon.

Antibiotics

If you were prescribed antibiotics, be sure to take the antibiotics as directed to help prevent infection.

Oral Hygiene

Good oral hygiene is essential to good healing. The night of surgery, use the Peridex mouth rinse before bed.  The week after surgery, the Peridex should be used twice daily, after breakfast and before bed. Rinse with 5-10 ml for 1 minute, then spit it out. Do not eat or drink anything for 1/2 hour. Other mouthwashes should not be used unless directed by your surgeon. Brushing your teeth and the healing abutments is no problem. Be gentle initially with brushing the surgical areas.

Activity

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. This may weaken you and further limit your ability to exercise.

Wearing your Prosthesis

Partial dentures, flippers, or full dentures should be worn only as instructed by your surgeon.