Education | Implant
To slow and prevent bleeding, bite with light pressure on a gauze pack that has been placed over the surgical site (if applied by Dr. Porterfield). Pressure should be applied in 30-minute intervals and repeated until bleeding in controlled. Pressure will assist in the body’s natural blood clotting process. If the bleeding persists, without slowing for several hours, apply a moist tea bag wrapped in gauze and repeat the step above. The tannic acid in the tea will assist in controlling the bleeding. If active bleeding is still occurring after 3-4 hours, and the above measures have been taken, call our office immediately.
Swelling is a part of the body’s healing process and can be expected to last from 3 days to several weeks depending on the nature and extent of the surgery. Apply ice packs at 15-minute intervals to reduce swelling. After 72 hours, heat may be applied to the swelling. Heat will increase circulation and aid in the healing process. Fair skinned, or individuals who bruise easily may anticipate some discoloration of the skin in the area surrounding the surgical procedure site.
Do not rinse your mouth for at least 24 hours. However, after 24 hours, gently rinse with warm salt water. Do not use vigorous mouth washing action. This may dislodge the body’s natural clotting processes and reopen the area to bleeding.
Do not exercise, use physical force or enter into stressful situations for the first 24 hours or as instructed by Dr. Porterfield. This will increase your heart rate and blood pressure. This has an adverse action on the body’s natural healing process.
Do not try to eat solid foods until the local anesthetic wears off. You will have no feeling in the surrounding area, including your tongue, and may unknowingly bite yourself. A nutritious diet throughout your healing stage is most important to your comfort, temperament and healing. Hungry people become irritable and less able to deal with discomfort that can follow surgery. Soups, cooked cereals, mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs, yogurt and cottage cheese are recommended for the initial day following surgery. Cooked vegetables, stewed chicken, broiled fish and other soft foods can be added to your diet as your comfort indicates. Do NOT eat sticky or hard foods. Avoid acidic foods such as tomatoes, orange juice and citrus fruits. Sensitivity to cold on the natural teeth can occur and will disappear gradually with time. Avoid ice, ice cream, cold drinks and solids for the first several days after the procedure.
Be sure to consume liquids immediately and prior to taking any pain medication. This will help prevent nausea, and expedite the medications’ effects. Do not use a straw when consuming liquids. The sucking action will cause a vacuum in the mouth and may dislodge the body’s natural clotting process.
DO NOT SMOKE. If you smoke, your implant(s) have an increased risk of failing. Do not consume alcoholic beverages until the healing process is complete and while you’re under medication. Also don’t exceed the prescribed and recommended dosage of medication, take only as directed.
When you should notify Dr. Porterfield:
- If active bleeding continues after 3-4 hours of applied pressure to the surgical site.
- If you are unable to maintain a nutritious diet after 48 hours.
- If numbness persists after the initial day of surgery.
- If pain or swelling increases after the third day.
- If bleeding has not decreased after two days.
- If sutures or stitches become loose or dislodged prior to the third day or if an implant becomes loose.
- If an implant fractures.
- If you have any symptoms that may indicate a reaction or allergy to medication, such as: skin rash, hives, elevated temperature, increased and/or erratic heart rate, nausea/vomiting, dizziness/faint, or blurred vision.
- If your body temperature, measured orally, exceeds 100.5 F.
Please notify our office if you have any of the above applies to you. Most often there is a simple solution that can resolve the situation and free you of worry.