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Better Care For Your Dental Implants

Appropriate post-operative care is essential for the success of dental implant surgery. The after-effects of the surgery solely depend on the actions of the patient. So it is important to follow the instructions provided by the medic for the best results. 

During the first 24 hours:

In most cases of the implant procedure, minimal bleeding is expected. It may continue for hours. It is better to use gauze packs to control it. Make sure the gauze packs remain in place. Bite down gently and firmly and keep them until the bleeding is controlled. The gauze may be changed between 30 and 40 minutes. 

  • Exercise care: Do not disturb the surgical area, avoid rinsing vigorously for the next 24 hours after the surgery. 
  • Diet: Eat any nourishing food that can be taken comfortably. This will fasten the healing process. Start with liquids or pureed foods like ice cream, yogurt, pudding, soup, etc. Avoid extreme hot, spicy and crispy food that may irritate the surgical sites. Advance to the normal diet gradually. Avoid alcohol for 24 hours after the surgery or while taking medication. 
  • No smoking: Smoking is strictly prohibited as it is one of the main causes of implant failure. It retards healing, causing increased discomfort and an increased chance of dry sockets. 
  • Oral hygiene: This is a very important factor for good healing and to prevent infections. Clean thoroughly after each meal beginning the day after surgery. If bleeding resumes after brushing, use gauze as a countermeasure. Use prescribed mouthwash. 
  • Activity: Limit the physical activities during the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery. Overexertion of pressure may lead to postoperative bleeding and discomfort.

After 24 hours

  • Swelling: One may or may not experience swelling depending on the procedure. If there is swelling, it may persist for 7 to 10 days. Swellings can be minimized by applying ice packs during the first 48 hours. Later warm water can be applied.
  • Mouth rinses: Use 1/4 teaspoon of salt dissolved in an 8-ounce glass of warm water and rinse with portions of the solution. Do it at least two or three times daily.
  • Brushing: Start your normal oral routine as soon as possible. Soreness and swelling may hamper proper brushing, but it is extremely important to clean your teeth. 
  • Discoloration or Bruising: The bruising beneath the tissue will generate discoloration. This is a normal condition that might appear 2-3 days after surgery. Applying moist heat on the area may speed up the resolution of the discoloration.
  • Stiff jaw muscles: This is a normal condition that creates a difficulty in opening the mouth wide for a few days after surgery. Stretching these muscles may help to heal this situation.
  • Healing: A patient may feel very uncomfortable during the first two days, followed by gradual steady improvement. If there is no continued improvement or situation become worse, better to consult your doctor. Sutures typically dissolve on their own during the first week.

During the healing process, you may see the cover screw that is on the implants which are normal after the surgery. You are advised to have regular checkups with the dental professional to ensure the implant is kept as clean as possible.

Authored By : Dr.Shambhu H Shivanna & Dr. Chiranjeevi Reddy G