For a lifetime of smiles!
Whether you are receiving a single tooth replacement or having multiple dental implants placed to restore your oral health, these recommendations can help you recover quickly and successfully.
The First 48 Hours
When you leave our office following your surgery, you will have gauze placed over the surgical site. You may leave this in for approximately 30 minutes, then remove it.
If the bleeding has subsided, there is no need to place more gauze. If the area is still bleeding, you can place another piece of fresh gauze and bite down with firm, steady pressure for another 15 minutes.
Oozing is normal for the first 24 to 48 hours. However, if the bleeding is moderate to severe, you can bite down on a moistened tea bag. Tea contains tannic acid, which shrinks vessels and capillaries to reduce bleeding. If bleeding is still persistent, call our office for further instruction.
To reduce swelling, a cold compress can be placed on the outer jaw every 20 minutes for the first 24 hours. Any tenderness can be addressed with over the counter pain medication or Dr. Ladani may give you prescription medication.
You should avoid strenuous activity of any kind for at least 48 hours after surgery. When your heart rate increases, there is a higher risk of bleeding, swelling, and discomfort. We also recommend eating a soft food diet.
The First Week
Most patients find that any discomfort or swelling begins to diminish around day three or four following surgery. If any absorbable stitches were placed, they will probably begin to fall out sometime during the first week.
Over-the-counter medications can be tapered off as necessary. However, some patients may need to continue these medications for at least one week, depending on the extent of their procedure.
Typically, we will see you around seven to 10 days after your surgery for your first follow up appointment.
Most patients can resume normal eating habits after the first week.
Total Healing Timeline
In most cases, dental implants will require a few months of healing before the restoration is attached. Even though you will be comfortable within a few days after your surgery, your jawbone will continue to heal for the next several weeks. During this time, the bone will fuse to the implant, a process known as osseointegration.
Healing times can vary significantly for each patient, however, it can take about three to four months on average for full healing time. If you required any preparatory procedures, such as bone grafts or sinus lifts, it may add time to your overall treatment.
It is important to continue normal hygiene during this part of your healing process. Proper brushing and flossing will keep your teeth and gums healthy and prevent oral bacteria from interfering with your recovery.
Common Dental Implant Surgery Side Effects
Pain and Discomfort
After oral surgery, a little bit of pain and discomfort is only natural. It should be most noticeable in the first day or so after the surgery, with improvements from there on as you heal.
Patients are encouraged to use prescription painkillers as directed to manage their pain. Over-the-counter pain medications can also be used once the pain is less severe yet still an issue.
A little bit of blood from incision areas may appear in your saliva. As long as the bleeding is minor, everything is normal. The bleeding should no longer be an issue after a few days.
To minimize bleeding after oral surgery, avoid strenuous physical activity and be sure to focus on rest early on.
Tooth and Gum Sensitivity
The area around the gumline where the dental implants are placed will be tender. This applies to the bone, the gum tissue, and even surrounding teeth. These issues will abate over the course of a few days as the tissues heal.
To avoid tooth and gum sensitivity, be sure to eat and drink lukewarm foods and beverages. Avoid spicy foods as well as foods with crumbs as these can irritate the sutures and incision areas.
Discoloration Around the Gums
Bruising and discoloration along the gum tissue is normal and to be expected. The discoloration should fade after a few days, and no longer be a major issue after two weeks. So long as the coloration improves, you are doing all right.
Swelling of the Gum Tissue
Swelling is also common following any sort of surgical procedure. As with the discoloration, swelling will be an issue for about two weeks. It should no longer be too noticeable along the gumline around that timeframe.
Mild Swelling Around the Face
The post-op swelling may affect parts of the face around the area where the surgery was performed. Be sure to keep that in mind as you are recovering. This will last for a week or two weeks, with improvements from day to day.
To help manage bruising and swelling, you can apply a cold compress covered in a towel to the affected part of your face. Leave it on for about 15 to 20 minutes, and then take it off for about 15 to 20 minutes. You can repeat the process as needed to help address a number of these post-op side effects.
What to Do in Case of an Emergency
If your side effects get worse or you have a pressing concern, do not hesitate to contact our office. It’s better to have these matters addressed immediately as a means of avoiding serious complications.