Dental implants are screw-shaped metal posts that serve as artificial tooth roots for those whose teeth had fallen out or been removed. It connects the jawbone to secure itself in place. Then, a cap that looks like a tooth is placed over the top, resulting in a realistic-looking artificial tooth that lasts for a lifetime when cared for properly.
Dental implant surgery can sound daunting — after all, you’re having a metal post inserted into your jawbone.
However, these procedures are quite safe, with surprisingly fast recovery times, and they restore your smile so well that people would never notice
With that in mind, let’s cover some facts on the dental implant recovery process.
Number of Implants Received
In general, recovery time for dental implants is pretty short. Overall, most people see the effects of the surgery clear up completely within a week of the procedure.
Obviously, getting a single dental implant will have the shortest recovery time. If you receive multiple implants, the larger and more numerous wounds will take longer. It could extend beyond a week, depending on the number of implants.
What to Expect After Surgery
After you leave the dentist, the affected areas may bleed a bit and be minorly painful. These are normal and should clear up within a couple of days.
By day three, most of those symptoms should be gone.
However, you may also experience a stiff jaw, dryness, and sore throat and/or tongue. These usually are gone by the seventh-day post-surgery.
1. Watch What You Eat
While your mouth is healing, it’s imperative you avoid acidic and hard foods. Eating these runs you the risk of harming the healing tissue or damaging the implant. Additionally, acid from foods (like citrus fruits) can further irritate and sting the affected tissue in your mouth.
Stick to soft, non-acidic foods. Items like yogurt, smoothies, pudding, mashed potatoes, leafy greens, and soup are ideal.
2. Use Hot and Cold
If you’re experiencing post-surgery pain or discomfort, you can rely on ice to soothe pain and provide relief.
Heat could also be useful, but you have to be more careful.
See, if you use heat, it pulls blood away from the affected area and into your cheek. If the implant area gets infected, you’re in danger of spreading that infection to other areas of your face and head.
3. Oral Health Habits
Make sure you have a soft-bristled toothbrush (ask your dentist for one after surgery) and be extra gentle. Pay extra attention around the implant areas.
Additionally, consider antiseptic mouthwash, especially if it contains menthol. The mouthwash will kill infection-causing bacteria, and the menthol can provide cooling that eases the pain and inflammation around the implants.
Dental implants are a marvel of modern dentistry — not only do they look and feel like real teeth, but recovery time is short. You’ll be back to your regular life in no time.
If you’re interested in learning if dental implants are right for you, reach out to Absolute Smile. We’ll evaluate your situation and see if dental implants are a good choice, as well as examine other options. Contact us today — all new patients get a free consultation.