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How should I care for my dental implant following placement?

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Successful oral surgery depends on keeping the mouth as clean as possible.

What oral hygiene routine should I follow after my implant placement?

You should start cleaning your other teeth as normal with a toothbrush and toothpaste, starting on the evening of your dental implant placement.  Avoid brushing the surgical site for the first few days, but then begin to carefully clean this area with a toothbrush as well, once tenderness permits.

Blog_image_August2021_002Hot salt mouthwashes (a cup of hot water with a teaspoon of salt) are very beneficial for healing in the first week.  Ensure that the mouthwash is not so hot that it scalds and then hold the hot mouthwash over the surgical site until it cools.  Repeat this as often as possible.

Try to keep food away from the surgical area for as long as possible. Rinse following eating to keep the area clean.

You are advised not to smoke until the wound has healed, as this severely limits healing in the mouth and can affect the likelihood of the dental implant successfully securing into the jaw bone.

What should I avoid after my dental implant treatment?

  • Take care to only have cold drinks and do not eat until the local anaesthetic has worn off.
  • Avoid hot drinks or hot food for the first day and do not ‘swill’ liquid over the area.
  • Try not to disturb the area with your tongue or fingers.
  • Do not undertake strenuous exercise (e.g., running / gym) for the first 48 hours.

Will I have swelling or bruising around the dental implant?

Blog_image_August2021_003You may have some swelling and/or bruising following your treatment – this usually reaches a peak two to three days later.  This is quite normal, and both will subside naturally after a few days. Swelling can be reduced with ice packs (or a bag of frozen peas) wrapped in a towel. Hold on the cheek area for a maximum of ten minutes at a time with twenty minutes’ break. After twenty-four hours, gentle heat is more beneficial. Sleeping propped up slightly on two to three pillows may also help.

Will I be in pain after the implant procedure?

Pain should not be a big problem. Although you may be sore for a few days, this can be managed with over-the-counter painkillers.  You should take these regularly at the maximum stated dose for the first two days after your surgery. Take whatever painkillers you normally take for headaches, aches, and sprains (ibuprofen and paracetamol make a good combination) and be sure to take your first dose before the local anaesthetic has completely worn off.

If after a few days you experience increasing pain and swelling, you must call the surgery on 01273 813898 as soon as possible, so that we can arrange an appointment to ensure you are not beginning to develop an infection.

Can I wear my denture after treatment?

Blog_image_August2021_004If you have a denture that covers the surgical area, please wear it as little as possible for the first week to protect the surgical site during its initial healing period. You should always leave any denture out at night.

What about the stitches around the dental implant?

The stitches we use are dissolvable but often remain for around two to three weeks. If they are uncomfortable or annoying, contact the surgery and we will arrange for them to be removed.

Will the site bleed?

Some minor bleeding after surgery in the mouth is perfectly normal. If this persists, apply pressure by biting firmly down over the area on a dampened gauze swab or clean handkerchief for sixty minutes whilst sitting upright. Do not keep checking or changing the gauze. You should contact us if bleeding persists for any reason after applying pressure in this way.

Blog_image_August2021_005If you have been given a course of antibiotics to take after your surgery, please ensure that you complete the course.

We want your recovery to be as smooth and pleasant as possible. It is therefore vital to follow these instructions very carefully – if you have any concerns or questions regarding your progress, please do not hesitate to contact us, call Ringmer Dental on 01273 813898. An out-of-hours contact number is always available on our answerphone.