Dental implants have a success rate of 90 to 95% over 10 years. Their lifespan depends on several factors, including your age, bone quality, and implant location.
What you do after the procedure matters, too. Your oral hygiene and lifestyle habits have a major impact on dental impact recovery. In addition to brushing and flossing, your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods and get more rest.
Intense aerobic exercise and heavy lifting, for instance, are not recommended in the first few days after surgery. These activities can delay healing and increase your risk of bleeding.
If you’re wondering what to do after getting dental implants, read on! Below we’ll share five tips to help you recover faster and avoid complications.
1. Stop Smoking
Cigarette smoking not only stains your teeth but can also interfere with the healing process. This habit affects the immune system while restricting blood and oxygen flow to your tissues.
The World Health Organization warns that smoking increases the risk of post-surgery complications. In clinical trials, patients who kicked this habit about four months before surgery got better results than those who continued to smoke.
If you can’t quit cold-turkey, try to avoid smoking in the days before and after dental implant surgery. Call a friend or go out for a walk when nicotine cravings kick in.
2. Rinse with Warm Salt Water
Another trick that helps with dental implant recovery is to rinse your mouth with warm salt water. This helps remove oral bacteria without affecting the surgical site.
Salt water also accelerates healing. To reap the benefits, use it over the next 24 to 72 hours after getting dental implants. Simply mix a half teaspoon of salt into a cup of warm water and rinse your mouth every few hours.
3. Apply Cold Compresses
Most patients experience some tenderness and swelling immediately after surgery, which is perfectly normal. These symptoms subside over the next few days.
A simple way to reduce inflammation is to apply cold compresses or ice. If you’re using ice cubes, wrap them in a cloth.
Hold the compress to the swollen area for 15 to 20 minutes at a time. Repeat every three or four hours.
4. Avoid Strenuous Exercise
No one can deny the health benefits of exercise, but your body needs to rest after surgery. That’s why you should wait a few days before resuming your workout routine.
Strenuous activity can slow down healing and increase the risk of complications. Heavy lifting, running, and intense exercise, in general, should be avoided for a week or so.
This doesn’t mean you should lie in bed, though. Feel free to go out for a walk, stretch your muscles, and do some light yoga.
5. Stick to Soft Foods for 24 Hours
Refrain from eating hot, spicy, or hard foods in the first 24 hours after surgery. Almonds, for example, can irritate the tissues in your mouth and cause pain.
If you don’t feel like eating, that’s perfectly fine. When your appetite returns, start with cream soups, smoothies, fruit purees, oatmeal, and other soft foods or beverages.
Dental Implant Recovery Made Easy
These dental implant recovery tips can prevent complications and ensure that your tissues heal properly. Your dentist may also recommend medications and other self-care measures, such as using a toothbrush with soft bristles.
Generally, most patients are able to return to work the next day after surgery. Some need to take a day or two to feel like themselves again. Listen to your body and get as much rest as you can.
Interested to know more? Contact our team at ActOn Implants to discuss your needs and see how we can help!