A dental implant is a nearly perfect replica of a real tooth. A titanium post is surgically placed into your jawbone to act as a new root to stabilize your restoration. As with any surgical procedure, you can expect there to be a bit of a recovery, but don’t worry about missing several weeks of work to replace your missing teeth. Here’s when you can expect to be back on your feet after dental implant surgery.
Recovering from Dental Implant Surgery
Your implant posts can be placed in a single appointment, and you’ll go home the same day. You’ll need to take it easy for a day or two, even if you feel fine walking out of the office. Although you won’t feel any pain before or immediately after the procedure, you can expect your mouth to be sore after the effects of any sedation or anesthesia dissipate.
As the effects of any medications wear off, you can manage your discomfort using an OTC or prescribed pain reliever. Applying a cold compress to the outside of your mouth can reduce swelling and bruising while also numbing the area temporarily.
Your implant dentist will recommend forgoing any strenuous activities for at least two days to prevent delays in the healing process. It’s important to listen to how your body feels, which will indicate whether you’re ready to resume your regular activities. If you feel groggy or dizzy, take a little more time to rest before heading back to work.
Avoid Potential Delays in Your Recovery
Everyone heals at a different pace. While most people are expected to recover from dental implant surgery within a few days, chronic medical issues that compromise the immune system can slow your recovery. Patients with a history of substance abuse, smoking, or heavy alcohol consumption can also take longer to heal. Your age can also affect the healing process, as well as the density of your bone.
You can avoid unnecessary delays in your journey by keeping a few tips in mind:
- Follow your dentist’s aftercare instructions.
- Keep your mouth clean by maintaining your oral hygiene.
- Stick to softer foods for a couple of weeks.
- Don’t drink through a straw.
- Don’t smoke or drink alcohol.
- Avoid strenuous activities until cleared by your dentist.
- Maintain your follow-up appointments.
You’ll be back to your daily routine in just a few days, and your gum tissue will be healed in a couple of weeks. Although you may no longer see healing on the surface, it will take several weeks for your jawbone to integrate with your posts. Your dentist will monitor the progress to determine the ideal time to complete the final step to restoring your smile.
About Dr. James D. Geer
Dr. Geer earned his dental degree from the University of Texas at Houston before continuing his training in oral surgery. He is a member of various professional organizations, including the American Dental Association and the Academy of General Dentistry. If you’re ready to replace your lost teeth, contact our office today to schedule your dental implant consultation.