Dental implants are the perfect way to replace missing teeth and prevent future tooth loss. Over three million Americans have at least one dental implant, while another 500,000 join the ranks every year. The dental implant procedure can involve multiple procedures across several months.
Nowadays, modern dental implants are considered a routine option by experienced dentists. Dental implant surgery is considered a serious procedure compared to other dental procedures like getting a tooth extracted or a cavity filled. If you have not had a dental implant before, it is normal to feel excited and anxious.
However, you can effectively ease your worries and set yourself up for success by preparing for the procedure accordingly. Below are some ways you can prepare for the dental implant process:
Stock up on soft foods and beverages.
After your procedure, you probably won’t feel like walking around, let alone cooking something to eat. That said, it is recommended that you stock up on soft foods, soups, waters, and other nutritional drinks. This is important so you will have all you need and can rest after the procedure.
Having a stock of the food you need beforehand can also help ensure you won’t be tempted to skip a meal. Keep in mind that you might need to eat a soft food diet for a few weeks after your dental implant procedure. It is likely that you will also be eating soft foods longer after a bone graft.
Take the day off after your procedure.
While some patients can feel well enough to report back to work the next day, others might need to rest for a day or two after the procedure. If you have never had an implant before and you’re unsure about how you might feel, it would be best to play it safe and file for a leave the day after your dental implant procedure so you can rest and recharge.
Consult your dentist about your sedation options if you are anxious.
If you feel anxious about your dental implant procedure, you don’t have to be embarrassed about it. Rather than toughing it out, consider talking to your dentist about any of your worries, fears, and concerns about the procedure. It’s safe to assume dentists would also want their patients to feel relaxed and comfortable so they would be more than happy to help you out with your concerns.
What to Expect During the Healing Process
Healing after a dental surgery might take longer compared to other procedures. For a few days, it is normal to feel soreness and discomfort. You might also notice redness, slight bleeding, and swelling around the implant area. Fortunately, these symptoms would only last a week or so.
Generally, the healing process can take a few weeks or even a few months. Once completely healed, you will feel normal again. However, you should strictly follow all the instructions provided by your dentist on diet and oral care especially if your post and jaw has not fully healed yet.
The best way to ensure your implant will heal quickly is to follow the after-care instructions provided. Start by ensuring you have a thorough at-home oral care routine and you continue eating soft foods while waiting for the implant site to fully heal. Proper rest and nutrition are also important especially during the first week after the procedure.
If you notice any complications like swelling that does not subside, extreme pain, or other signs of infection, get in touch with your doctor right away. Even if you notice any mild symptoms but you are unsure if it is normal or not, it would be best to visit your dentist so it can be checked right away.