Dental Implant Recovery Tips By Dr. John Goodman on May 14, 2023

illustration of dental implant placementDental implants are widely recognized as the superior treatment for missing teeth. Implants are surgically placed in the jaw where they act as artificial tooth roots. Dental implants can support a full range of dental restorations, including crowns, bridges, and dentures, restoring the strength, function, and beauty of the smile. 

Dental implant treatment takes place in several stages. The process is lengthy, but most patients find that the benefits of treatment are well worth the time. Dr. John Goodman offers his Kansas City, MO, patients dental implant recovery tips to promote healing and minimize the risk of complications after dental implant treatment.

Follow the Recommended Dietary Plan

During the initial stage of dental implant recovery, the gums surrounding the surgical site will be sensitive to pressure. Patients must adjust their diet to avoid disrupting the surgical site while tissues heal. We recommend that patients consume liquids and soft foods during the first week of dental implant recovery. Good options during this stage of recovery include:

  • Smoothies
  • Yogurt 
  • Ice cream
  • Pudding
  • Apple sauce
  • Broth and creamy soups
  • Mashed potatoes

As tissues heal, patients can progress to soft foods that require a little more chewing. During the second week of dental implant recovery, most patients are ready to eat foods like pasta, rice, cooked vegetables, fish, and eggs. While tissues continue to heal, patients should avoid biting and chewing directly at the surgical site.

Take Prescribed Medication

Infection is one of the greatest risks of dental implant treatment. To minimize that risk, patients are often prescribed antibiotics. Any prescribed medication should be taken exactly as directed until completion. We also recommend over-the-counter pain medication to manage discomfort and inflammation.

Ice the Surgical Site

Ice packs are essential during the first 24 to 48 hours of dental implant recovery. Ice packs reduce pain and minimize inflammation. Ice packs can be applied to the outer cheek closest to the surgical site for periods of 15 to 20 minutes.

Avoid Strenuous Activity

Rest is a vital part of any surgical recovery, including oral surgery. We urge our Kansas City patients to rest as much as they feel necessary, being sure to keep the head slightly elevated when doing so. Most patients feel reenergized within a couple of days of treatment. Still, it is important not to strain the body while it heals. Patients should avoid strenuous exercise and heavy lifting for at least two weeks after dental implant surgery.

Keep Surgical Sites Clean

Cleaning the surgical site is beneficial in avoiding infection after dental implant treatment. Patients can clean their mouths by gently swishing with an antibacterial rinse (provided by the dentist) or a warm salt water rinse (one tablespoon of salt per cup of water). Vigorous swishing can disrupt sutures, so patients should rinse gently.

Resume Oral Hygiene Habits

Our Kansas City patients are often nervous about oral hygiene practices after dental implant surgery, but it is safe to resume brushing and flossing the day after dental implant treatment. Patients should use a soft-bristled toothbrush and avoid bruising directly on the surgical site until oral tissues have healed. 

Contact Us

Dental implants are a safe and effective treatment for tooth loss. If you have questions about dental implant surgery or treatment recovery, Dr. John Goodman can provide you with more information. To schedule an appointment at our dental practice, send us a message online.

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John P. Goodman, DDS

John P. Goodman, DDS We Give Kansas City a Reason to Smile!

Dr. John Goodman has more than two decades of experience serving the community of Kansas City, MO. He offers a comprehensive range of services to address all types of dental problems, and he accepts CareCredit® financing to make treatment as accessible as possible. 

To request a consultation, please fill out our online form or call us at (816) 842-8585.

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"My experience with Dr. John Goodman DDS was outstanding. The entire staff was courteous and very accommodating. Dr. Goodman made me feel very comfortable but also finally gave me hope for having that "beautiful smile" that we (with not so good teeth) always wish for. I left feeling elated and excited for the first time about a dental appointment."

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