After Placement of Dental Implants/Bone Grafts

  1. If you went to sleep for your procedure (IV sedation) you should go home upon discharge from our office, lie down on your right side, head elevated and rest until the effects of the anesthetic are gone.  You may be sleepy, unsteady, have some memory loss and possibly become nauseated, dizzy and faint so an adult should stay with you for 12-24 hours after your surgery.  You should not operate any mechanical equipment or drive a motor vehicle for at least 24 hours (longer if you feel any residual effects from the anesthetic or are taking narcotics for pain).
  2. Bleeding:  Some bleeding is normal, and blood-tinged saliva may be present for 24 hours or longer following your surgery.  Change the gauze over the surgical area(s) every hour for the next 2-4 hours if needed.
  3. Oral Hygiene and Care:  Keep your mouth clean.  When the numbness has worn off, begin holding warm salt water (1/2 teaspoon with 1/2 cup water) in your mouth and swishing gently after each meal and before bed.  If you were given a prescription for Peridex rinse, alternate it with the salt water rinses until your follow up appointment.  Brush gently around the surgical area with a soft toothbrush.  Don’t pick or probe at the area with your tongue, fingers, waterpik or any other objects.
  4. Do not smoke.  It slows the healing process after any surgery especially surgery on bone.
  5. Swelling and Bruising:  Place ice packs on the cheek(s) for 20 minutes then remove the ice pack for 30 minutes during the first 24 hours and use it anytime during the first week for swelling and/or pain.  Your face and neck may bruise but should disappear in 2-4 weeks.  Your mouth may not open as wide because the cheeks are sore and stiff but should resolve in 2-4 weeks.  Keep your lips moist to prevent cracking or chapping.  Like a sprained ankle swelling may not show much for 3 (three) days and the 3rd day after surgery maybe the most uncomfortable for you.  If you develop redness, soreness or swelling at your IV site, place warm, moist compresses on the area every 2-4 hours until the symptoms go away.  If the redness starts streaking up your arm and feels hot, hard and painful, call our office right away.
  6. Sinus Precautions:  When implants are placed in the upper jaw it is possible for the sinuses to be involved and you will be asked to follow sinus precautions.  Do not blow your nose or stifle sneezes.  Symptoms such as sinus pressure, drainage, and swelling under the eyes, headaches and liquids running out of your nose as you drink are common.  You also will have a nose bleed.
  7. Diet:  While you are numb, eat soft cool foods like ice cream, pudding, Jell-O, Ensure, Carnation Instant Breakfast, etc.  If you are a diabetic, maintain your normal diet as much as possible following your physician’s instructions regarding your insulin schedule.  Advance your diet as tolerated.
  8. Discomfort and Medications:  Local anesthetic was injected into your gums so your lips, tongue, cheeks and back of the throat may be numb for 4-8 hours.  Taking the pain medication with soft food and a large volume of water will lessen any side effects of nausea or stomach upset.  A slight rise in body temperature may occur during the first 24 hours and increasing your fluid intake will help this.
  9. If you develop a fever of 101 degrees and/or persistent pain, swelling, a bad tasting drainage or pus in your mouth, call our office immediately.
  10. Antibiotics: You will be given a prescription for antibiotics.  Take as directed so it stays in your system and take all the medication.
  11. BRING YOUR DENTURE OR FLIPPER TO EVERY OFFICE VISIT.  There should never be pressure or rubbing over your surgical area.
  12. Narcotics will not be given after office hours.
  13. Please be assured that our interest in your case does not end with the completion of surgery.  If you have an emergency after hours, please go to the nearest emergency room or call our office for further automated instructions.