Post Operative Instructions
(After Dental Implants)
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.
You will feel some discomfort after the freezing wears off. This is normal and will probably last a few days. It is common to experience an increase in level of discomfort on the second day after implant placement. Take the prescribed pain medication as directed to manage any discomfort. Level of discomfort varies from patient to patient. It is important to bear in mind that pain medication may not relieve your discomfort completely.
A certain amount of bleeding is to be expected following surgery. Slight bleeding, oozing, or redness in the saliva is not uncommon. If bleeding does not subside, call for further instructions.
Swelling and Bruising:
Swelling of your jaw and cheeks are normal occurrences after surgery. Swelling and discomfort will generally increase for two or three days before it begins to subside. It is important that you apply ice to the outside of your cheek, 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off, for the first 24 hours after the procedure. After the first 24 hours, you may use ice as needed if you feel it helps with the discomfort. You may notice some bruising to your cheek and possibly neck in the days after surgery. You may experience more bruising than average if you tend to bruise easily.
You may resume eating and drinking when the freezing comes out. You may eat a regular diet on the unaffected side if implant surgery was performed on one side only. If chewing is difficult or multiple implants were placed, you may want to start with a soft diet and advanced to a regular diet as tolerated. If having difficult eating food, be sure to drink plenty of fluids. Avoid hot liquids for the first 12 hours or so.
Patients are usually given a dose of ibuprofen immediately prior to surgery in clinic. You will be asked to continue with ibuprofen at home or be switched to a similar prescription pain medication. Supplementing with acetaminophen (Tylenol) provides most patient with adequate pain control. Please follow the medication instructions on your post-op sheet. Discuss with clinic staff if you have been advised by another medical professional to avoid taking any of these medications.
Ibuprofen (Advil) 600 mg– Anti-inflammatory pain medication. Take as directed.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) 1000 mg– Pain medication that works well with ibuprofen. Take as directed.
Antibiotic– Preventative for infection. Take as directed.
Opioid/Narcotic– Pain medication indicated for more severe pain. Only sometimes required. Take as directed.
Good oral hygiene is essential for healing. The day after surgery, you should start using the Peridex mouth rinse. Alternatively, you can dilute any alcohol-free mouthwash with 50% water and use in its place. Peridex should be used twice daily, after breakfast and before bed for 14 days. Be sure to rinse for 1 minute then spit. Warm salt water rinses should be used after each meal. Salt water solution can be made by mixing 1 cup warm tap water with ¼-½ tsp salt. Continue your regular brushing routine, taking extra care when brushing near the surgical areas. If a healing abutment has been placed, please treat this as a tooth when brushing.
Any stitches you had placed to close the gums will dissolve on their own in approximately 7-14 days.
Physical activity should be kept to a minimum immediately following surgery. Avoid vigorous exercise for 3-5 days post-op. Throbbing or bleeding may occur with strenuous exercising. If this occurs, you should discontinue the activity.
Wearing Your Prosthesis:
You will be advised by clinical staff whether or not to immediately wear you dentures/flippers. You may require an office visit with your dentist to adjust your prosthesis; you will be advised by the clinic staff if this is necessary.