Featured Image Caption: Girl Smiling with Toothbrush
There are many reasons a person can lose a tooth: tooth decay, periodontal disease, or trauma. Each tooth loss can become an issue in the oral function, and not the less important aesthetic of the face. A patient has a choice to return and even further improve oral function with dental implants. The dental service of getting implants consists of surgery and tooth replacement insertion, so aftercare is important to follow through. This guide can help you with the recuperation process.
What is a dental implant?
Dental implants are replacement tooth roots. When a tooth is missing, an implant can provide the patient with beautiful, natural-looking, and fully-functional teeth that are comparable to natural teeth. The implant provides support for artificial (fake) teeth, such as crowns, bridges, or dentures which are permanently or temporarily placed on top of the dental implants.
Deal with pain and swelling after the procedure
It is usual to feel sore and have some swelling for a few days after the procedure. This unpleasant feeling can easily be solved with painkillers and ice pack treatments. If dealing with pain and soreness, take painkillers you usually take for aches and sprains. Remember to take your first dose of meds before the local anesthetic has completely worn off.
Icepacks can be even bags of frozen peas; the ice-cold will help with the swelling. You could even make your own homemade gel ice pack from diluted rubbing alcohol. The pack needs to be wrapped in a towel to avoid shock and skin irritation. It can be used for ten minutes the most, after which you have to take a break. If this type of discomfort continues after a few days, go back to your dentist urgently.
Avoid hot foods and beverages
After the procedure is done, your dentist will advise you for how long to avoid hot foods and beverages. The reason behind it is that the warmth will improve circulation which, in turn, can make the area more painful and the wound reopens.
Look at it from the bright side, it’s a great opportunity to eat ice cream or drink an iced vanilla latte every day! This ‘special’ diet will need to last for at least a week so prepare for ice cream and fruit salads.
Bite carefully while healing
Along with hot foods, there are other foods you should avoid while healing after the procedure. Solid foods are not recommended in the first few weeks and it is reintroduced slowly to the diet. As swelling and discomfort begin to subside, you will also be able to consume them.
Apart from the pressure needed to chew which will be painful, the other issue is the food particles that can get into your wound and either hurt or even infect it. If your procedure was done on one side of the mouth, try to chew on the other side only, evading the freshly operated side. However, if you got work done on both sides of the mouth, you should be on a liquid diet through the recommended period.
Keep your wound clean
After each meal, you should clear your wound. The easiest way to do this is with salted water. Take a mouthful and swish it around your mouth gently. Don’t be vigorous as strong movements can hurt you and, in extreme cases, cause the wound to reopen. You could just hold the water in the mouth for a few seconds, it will be enough to clean the area. Repeat after each meal or whenever you feel the need to do it. As mentioned, avoid eating on the side where you got the implants for the best results.
There are also special gentle mouthwashes that can help in disinfection, although this has to be recommended by the professional that you are going to. Be gentle and vigorous in keeping your mouth clean of food particles.
Brush your teeth regularly but after a short break
Brushing your teeth is an essential daily activity. You’ve also done it as a preparation before the procedure. However, after the dental service is done you might be advised not to brush for a few days, and maybe even longer if you’ve just had dental implants put in multiple places.
When you start brushing, be exceptionally gentle. You might even consider using brushes with soft bristles for sensitive gum and teeth for the first few weeks. First, brush everything but the implant spot, and then slowly start introducing brushing as your wound heals. When it comes to flossing, don’t rush to floss around the implant! It is best to get the advice of your dentist to start flossing around the implant again.
Don’t miss your follow up appointments
Schedule regular visits with your dental provider. Your new dental implants are made as one of the more complex dental services, as it usually includes multiple visits for implant surgery, crown or denture insertion, and a few follow-up appointments. Remember that crowns are not forever and that you will need an occasional check-up, as well as cleaning or whitening services. Your dentist will explain the aftercare and procedure the best since it differs from the work you need to get done. In the end, you will have your beautiful smile and forget about a few weeks of liquids only.
By Tim Tylor
– A former teacher and a current writer. I write on a variety of topics such as home improvement, travelling, family and relationships, health, content making, etc. I love literature and history. My greatest hobby is playing chess.