One of the most significant benefits of getting dental implants is that they function as replacement tooth roots. As a result, they provide a strong foundation for fixed or removable teeth that replace the ones you lost.
However, the process of getting dental implants in Fort Lauderdale requires surgery. The implant has to be placed deep in the jaw, which means the surgeon has to make a small cut to open your gum and expose the bone.
The surgeon will then drill a hole into the bone where the implant metal post will be placed. Once done, it will be covered with the gum tissue.
The final step in the entire process calls for your dentist attaching a crown to the implant post.
Dental Implant Surgery Aftercare Tips
But even if the process seems challenging, getting dental implants provides you several benefits. The implants can last for a lifetime and they function like natural teeth. They can also prevent bone loss and gum disease.
Like other forms of surgery, following the required aftercare steps and processes will help you avoid complications. Doing them will also help hasten your recovery.
If you recently had a dental implant surgery or will go through one soon, below are six essential aftercare dos and don’ts you have to remember:
1. Understand and follow all of your dentist’s and surgeon’s instructions
During the preparatory stages, get the details from your dentist and oral surgeon regarding the things you can, can’t, and shouldn’t do after the surgery.
Your specialists know how you can best recover from your oral surgery, and are the best persons to ask for post-surgery advice and tips.
One of the important tips that your specialists will give you is how to treat some post-surgical symptoms. These include bleeding, swelling, and pain, which often persist a few days after the surgery.
After surgery, your surgeon will put a gauze pack on the surgical site which you need to bite on to minimize bleeding. You can do this at home if you notice blood oozing from the affected area.
To ease swelling, apply an ice pack to the cheek of the surgical area. If we prescribed you any medications, take them as prescribed by your specialist.
Make sure you contact your dentist or oral surgeon immediately if the bleeding and swelling do not let up.
2. Get plenty of rest
To help your body recover from the surgery, you need to get plenty of rest. This should start on the day of the procedure.
Once you get home, spend the rest of the day lying down, with your head propped up on two or three pillows. You need to keep your head elevated to maintain blood circulation, which can help reduce bleeding and swelling.
To minimize the bleeding, swelling, pain, it is also best to take the next few days off from work and avoid doing any strenuous activities such as running, lifting weights, and other physically taxing exercises.
3. Eat the right foods
Solid foods will be out of your diet for a few days after your surgery. However, it does not mean that you should eat only tasteless and unhealthy liquid and soft fares.
After your surgery, your diet should comprise homemade soups and cooked or fresh soft vegetables and fruits. However, avoid eating or slurping hot food and drinking hot beverages since they can cause the surgical area to start bleeding again.
Fruit smoothies, shakes, and yogurts are also great additions to your post-surgery diet.
During recovery, stick to soft staples such as mashed potatoes and yams, low-sodium soup, yogurt, and other foods high in vitamins A and C since they promote healing.
Avoid chewing hard or crunchy food for six to eight weeks, particularly in the affected area.
1. Smoke and drink alcohol
If you smoke or chew tobacco, stop your vice temporarily or even quit permanently after surgery.
Smoking and tobacco use can increase your risk of infection around the surgical area. If this issue becomes severe, the implant may be removed and you may not be suitable for another dental implant surgery.
Additionally, do not drink any alcohol for the first 24 hours after your oral surgery. Like tobacco, it can also interfere with the healing process.
While taking any pain or antibiotic medication, make sure you avoid drinking any alcoholic beverage.
Like smoking, you will do well to reduce your intake of alcohol, too, if you want to improve your overall oral health.
2. Forget your oral hygiene habits
Although you may feel some pain and tenderness in your mouth, you should not be afraid to brush, floss, and do your other daily dental hygiene practices.
During the first few days after surgery, you can brush your teeth, but you have to avoid touching the surgical area. If your doctor prescribed an antibacterial mouthwash, use it to reduce the risk of infection.
You can also rinse the surgical site with saltwater twice or thrice a day after every meal to stop minimal bleeding.
A week after surgery, start brushing the area around the surgical site lightly to remove plaque buildup. You can also begin flossing, but be gentle when doing so.
Keep in mind that if you neglect your oral hygiene habits, you can develop an infection. Your other overall dental health may be affected, too.
3. Rush your recovery
Patients have different post-surgery recovery times. Your dentist and oral surgeon can tell you a realistic timeframe, but ultimately, it depends on how your body reacts to the implants and how diligent you are in following the important aftercare steps and advice.
Take all medications as prescribed by your specialists. Do not stop drinking them because you don’t feel any pain or the swelling has gone down. You need to complete the dosage, particularly for the antibiotics, to avoid developing an infection.
Avoid going back to work, exercising, and your daily routine, especially if there is still some pain, swelling, and bleeding around the surgical area. If you want to avoid any complications post-surgery, consider taking it easy for at least a week after the surgery.
Doing so will give you sufficient time to recover and feel comfortable having the implant and new crown.
Lastly, always visit your dentist during your scheduled appointments and see him or her right away if you experience any difficulty.
Like Invisalign in Fort Lauderdale, dental implants are popular teeth replacement solutions. By following these aftercare tips, you will be able to experience all the benefits this treatment offers without any complications or issues.