I Got Dental Implants, Now What?
Taking care of your new smile is crucial for its long-term success and flawless appearance. As one of Michigan’s leading dental implant practitioners, Dr. Kosinski wants to advise each of our patients on how to care for their implants, ensuring their durability and natural aesthetics. Learn more from this post-op guide to proper dental implant care—created by our Bingham Farms dental professionals—for optimal results.
Avoid the Dangers of Infection
Oftentimes patients believe that because their dental implant isn’t a “real tooth,” it becomes immune to infection and disease. However, this is entirely false. Whether it’s just one implant or a full-arch, your dental restoration requires the same care as natural teeth do, especially to avoid any plaque buildup, oral infection, or gum disease.
When you don’t remove plaque during your daily hygiene routine, it will continue to grow, and inflammation will occur around your restoration. The remaining plaque and debris will lead to oral infection and gum disease which causes bone loss, face distortion, and eventually, the loss of your implant.
To avoid the enemy of infection, be sure to visit Smile Creator at least twice a year for your dental checkups, brush and floss twice-a-day, and rinse with mouthwash. If you suspect any issues that may be arising, be sure to call Dr. Kosinski right away.
How Long Will It Take For My Dental Implants To Heal?
Each patient’s mouth is different, so there is no uniform healing process. Dr. Kosinski will prescribe you over-the-counter pain medication for the 48 hours following your procedure. Your mouth and gums are most likely to feel the sorest during this time, as the first two weeks are essential for your dental implants to heal properly.
Use the Right Hygiene Products
Cleaning an implant-supported tooth is just as important as cleaning a regular tooth. Luckily, it requires the same hygiene routine as your natural teeth– simply brush and floss twice-a-day and rinse with mouthwash daily. Additionally, you’ll need to choose gentle cleaning products for your new smile so there’s no damage or irritation to the restoration or soft tissue around it.
When shopping for a toothbrush, you’ll want one with soft or extra-soft bristles and a head that fits comfortably in your mouth. There’s been a great deal of research on which type of toothbrush is best for patients with dental implants. These studies show that you can effectively maintain your dental implants using either a manual or electric toothbrush.
Toothpaste containing abrasive ingredients can scratch your implant and irritate the soft tissue that supports it. These harsh ingredients include sodium fluoride, stannous fluoride, and baking soda. It’s also best to avoid whitening toothpaste and smoker’s toothpaste.
Rinse your mouth with antibacterial mouthwash to fight the bacteria that cause gum disease and tooth decay. When choosing your mouthwash, avoid teeth-whitening mouthwash and mouthwash containing alcohol. Alcohol causes dry mouth, a condition that interferes with your body’s natural ability to defend itself against dangerous bacteria.
If You Have Pain, Swelling, or Bleeding
Your mouth is a sensitive area, and even the smallest prick can lead to soreness, swelling, or bleeding. Therefore, it’s expected to feel some post-surgery discomfort. If you experience any pain or swelling, merely take a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory such as ibuprofen or Advil to help relieve your discomfort. Resting with ice packs is also recommended to help reduce any inflammation.
On the day of your implant surgery, you may continue to bleed for up to 24 hours. It’s important to apply light pressure with gauze to the site for at least an hour, or until you notice the bleeding has stopped. Once your bleeding has stopped, you can rinse your mouth with warm salt water to avoid any possible infection from occurring.
A Healthy Routine
Keeping up with a healthy, balanced lifestyle post-surgery is important for you and your new smile. For example, during the first 24 hours after receiving your restorations, limit your physical activity to prevent bleeding and discomfort. Also, eat cold, liquid foods to ensure your healing is successful. Furthermore, avoid smoking tobacco and drinking alcohol for at least three days to reduce the risk of infection or to prevent a delay in healing.
What Can I Eat After Dental Implant Surgery?
Dental implants require special care in the first two weeks following your procedure. That’s why Dr. Kosinski recommends changing your diet by incorporating less acidic foods, softer foods, and nutrient-rich beverages. Here’s a list of nutritious soft foods to try at home during the healing period:
- Mashed potatoes
- Cooked vegetables
Proper Implant Care with Dr. Kosinski
Don’t let your missing teeth affect your happiness and health. Discover the benefits of dental implants with Dr. Kosinski in Bingham Farms, MI and make your appointment today. Your new smile awaits at SmileCreator, contact us today.