After Placement of Dental Implants

Post-operative Instructions Following Dental Implant Surgery

Please take a moment to read these instructions.
Please ask for clarification if you have any questions.

  • Place gauze directly of the site of bleeding. Bite down on the gauze or apply direct pressure on the gauze with a finger.
  • To prevent swelling, apply ice packs to the side of your face 30 minutes on and 30 minutes off or 24 to 48 hours.  Do not apply ice directly on your skin. Keep your head elevated (you can use some extra pillows
  • Take the prescribed antibiotic as directed.
  • During the first post-operative week, gently clean the metal head of the implant(s) with a Q-tip twice a day. Use a soft toothbrush thereafter to maintain proper hygiene around the implant.
  • For pain relief, begin by take ibuprofen 400 to 600 mg every four to six hours or Tylenol / acetaminophen 650 mg (two regular strength 325 mg) every four hours.  You can take both ibuprofen and acetaminophen in combination to control more moderate pain.

    For severe pain, you should take the prescribed narcotic pain medication as directed on the bottle. You can combine the narcotic pain medication with ibuprofen and acetaminophen as described above. However, for every prescribed narcotic pain pill you take, reduce the acetaminophen by one pill.

  • After the swelling peaks (the third day after surgery) stop using ice and begin applying warm moist heat. There are a number of ways to apply heat to the face and extraction sockets:

    Let warm water wash over your face in the shower
    Use a soaked warm-to-hot washcloth over the swollen area
    Use warm salt-water rinses five times a day

  • Bruising may occur in the cheeks and underneath the jaw line. As the bruising resolves it will change color to green or yellow, will migrate down the neck, and will occasionally be seen on the upper chest. This is normal so do not become alarmed.
  • The stitches placed at the surgical site are dissolvable (unless otherwise specified by the surgeon), may fall out on their own, or occasionally may be present up to two weeks following surgery. The surgeon may decide to remove the stitches if they become a source of irritation.