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Dental implant post operative instructions

After receiving your dental implant, the conditions in your mouth will have changed. There will be a very strict set of rules that you have to follow for the first 72 hours, but at the very least for the first 24 hours. If you do not follow these instructions, you risk dental implant failure, contracting an infection, and may have to suffer through the implantation process all over again. This is why it is very important that you follow these instructions to the letter.

Do not smoke

no smoking

For the first 24 hours, you must not smoke anything. It does not matter how great the urge is, if you smoke in this crucial period, your chances of dental implant failure will increase markedly. After 24 hours it is ‘safe’, but smoking will still slow down the healing process and increase your healing time. The same is true for drinking alcohol or taking other drugs.

Food

You will have to rely on a liquid diet for the first 24 hours. Make sure that the liquids you are ingesting are not too hot or cold, as this may stimulate the nerve that is now hurt and recovering, and this can result in a very painful reaction. Make sure you do not eat the liquids through a straw, as the sucking motion can cause a pain reaction, and can dislodge the dental implant. You will also have to forego carbonated sodas for several weeks after getting a dental implant. You must also avoid fruits and foods with seeds in them for the next 24 hours, as these can get lodged in the sutures.

The sutures

Do not pick at or disturb the blood clot or the sutures. They must stay in place to guarantee healing. Do not dislodge or mess with them, with your tongue hand or otherwise. Depending on what kind of sutures you have, some of them may become loose or even come out. This is alright, and there is nothing to worry about.

Brushing and flossing

brush floss

For the first 12 hours after surgery, do not brush or floss at all. Do not rinse even, get some sleep and let your body forma  wound and allow your blood to clot over the area. After 12 hours, you should rinse the area very gently with salt water, taking extra care not to remove the blood clot. Once the 12 hours are up, you can brush and floss like you always do, but stay away from the surgical site, as this area will be tender and will not be in need of any brushing or flossing.

Physical activity

Sports, physical labor, sex, dancing, aerobics and any other strenuous physical activity is completely off limits for 24 hours. After that, you should still limit these activities to a minimum, or completely forego them until your blood clot is reabsorbed by your body. After 24 hours a minimum of movement may not hurt, and can even speed up the healing process, but even a major rise in blood pressure may stimulate the nerve, and cause a pain reaction.

images: 1. 2.

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