The Dental Implant Healing Timeline – What To Expect After Surgery

Interested in getting dental implants in Norwalk? You may be wondering what to expect as you heal and recover from your dental implant placement surgery. 

While dental implants are not as invasive as some other dental surgeries like tooth extraction, they still do require you to take some special steps to protect your mouth as your new implants heal. So in this blog from Riverwalk Dental Care, we’ll discuss what you can expect from the dental implant healing timeline. 

0-24 Hours After Surgery 

Immediately after your surgery, you won’t feel any pain or discomfort due to the numbing and sedation offered at our office. Dr. Nill will place a gauze pack over your implant site. You’ll bite down on this to ensure your blood clot forms properly. Bleeding should mostly slow within 1-2 hours, though intermittent bleeding may occur for 24 hours or longer.

Once your sedation and numbing wear off, you’ll experience some pain and discomfort. If you’ve been prescribed a painkiller, fill the prescription and take it as directed. If not, you can take over-the-counter medication like ibuprofen to help with pain. Icing the cheek near your implant site also will help numb the area.

Go home to rest and relax. We recommend taking the day off of work, if possible. Though some patients do work the day after their surgery, having an extra day to heal can be beneficial. 

Remember to follow Dr. Nill’s instructions, and only eat soft foods. Brush your teeth normally, but don’t brush the extraction site. Instead, use an oral rinse as prescribed by Dr. Nill. 

1-3 Days After Surgery

Symptoms like discomfort, pain, and swelling will typically peak and then begin to fade during this time. After about a day or two, your implant site should no longer be bleeding significantly, either.

You’ll need to continue to eat soft foods, avoid heavy exertion and exercise, and avoid brushing the dental implant site directly during this time. These steps will reduce bleeding, and also reduce the risk of damaging the blood clots around your new implant.

3-7 Days After Surgery

After about 3 days, you can usually start eating slightly firmer foods like pasta and rice, in addition to liquid and soft foods. You should still avoid hard and crunchy foods for a week or longer.

You can also get back to exercising at this time, though we recommend keeping things mild or moderate until at least a week after surgery. Extremely heavy exertion can still cause your implant site to hurt.

Keep rinsing your mouth and brushing your other teeth normally. Don’t brush the implant site directly for at least a week. 

1-2 Weeks After Surgery

At this time, you’ll usually come back to our office for a follow-up with Dr. Nill, and he’ll remove your stitches if non-dissolving sutures were used. He will check your healing and recovery process, and answer any questions you may have. 

After a week, your mouth will have healed significantly, and you can start brushing your implant site directly. You can also start eating pretty much any food you want, though you still should chew hard, tough, and crunchy foods on the opposite side of your mouth.

After 2 weeks, most patients are fully recovered. The implant site may feel slightly tender to the touch, but should feel completely healed and normal. The implant will continue to heal and bond with the jaw bone over the following 3-6 months, but the initial healing process will be over.

Contact Riverwalk Dental Care To Learn More About Implant Dentistry

Dental implants are the best way to restore missing teeth in Norwalk. If you’re interested in the benefits of implants and you’re wondering if you’re a good candidate for treatment, contact Riverwalk Dental Care online or give us a call at (203) 286-8668. At your consultation with Dr. David Nill, you can find out if implants are a good choice for you, and explore your other options for tooth replacement in Norwalk.