As you are anticipating the procedure in which your tooth will be replaced with a dental implant, you will undoubtedly be excited to fully restore your smile. For the best chances of positive treatment outcomes, patients should follow some pre-operative instructions.
Here are a few tips that your periodontist might offer prior to placing dental implants.
- Know what to expect from the procedure. In most cases, placing dental implants takes just a few hours in an outpatient setting. Ask the periodontist if there is anything special about your case that might differ.
- Ask someone to escort you home from your appointment. The effects of the sedation will not have worn off completely by the time you leave the office.
- Stop smoking! Tobacco use causes inflammation in the gum tissue that can interfere with the implant’s ability to fuse with the bone, as well as healing of the soft tissue at the implant site. Ideally, tooth implant patients will give up this habit entirely, but at the very least you should give up your cigarettes until you have healed from the surgery.
- If you are receiving intravenous sedation or general anesthesia, you probably will need to fast after midnight the day of your surgery.
- Be aware of the signs of complications, such as persistent bleeding, significant swelling or a fever. It’s important to know what symptoms you need to bring to the periodontist’s attention for follow-up.
- Get all of your medications before the day of your surgery. The periodontist may prescribe antibiotics as a preventive measure against infection, or you may get a prescription for painkillers. The last thing you want to do right after a surgical procedure is stand in line at the pharmacy.
Any sort of infection or illness can affect the healing process after the procedure, so if you’re getting signs of the sniffles (or any other health problem), be sure to mention this to your periodontist in case the surgery needs to be postponed for a brief time.
Each case is different, so you should be sure to ask your periodontist of any specific instructions or recommendations to help you prepare for dental implant placement. If you are actively involved in the planning process, you should know what to do for a smooth recovery.