Dental Implant Healing Timeline: What to Expect

  If you have missing teeth, then you may be looking into dental implants and trying to decide if this procedure is right for you. When you get an implant, a small post of titanium (in most cases) is placed in the jawbone, replacing the missing tooth from the root. Once this process is done, you will have to wait for about six months for the gums to heal and the implant to be integrated into the bone. Only after this, the dentist can place the abutment and connect the implant to the artificial tooth. Sometimes the first two steps are done at the same time, but that is for the dental surgeon to determine. This is just a short overview of what the dental implant process will look like. Here’s a step-by-step presentation of the healing timeline.

What to Expect After Having Implants Placed?

There are a few things to expect after the implant surgery and a few things you can do to make sure the healing process goes smoothly.  Most importantly, follow your doctor’s instructions for each step after the surgery.

First 24 hours:

  • Eat soft or liquid foods
  • Do not rinse, spit, or touch the area
  • Use gauze to control bleeding, for at least 2 hours after the surgery 
  • Use medication for pain right before the anesthesia starts to wear off
  • Avoid effort, and rest as much as possible

First 2-3 Days

  • You will feel some discomfort and pain in the area 
  • Do not do any strenuous physical activity 
  • Start introducing some more solid foods, but focus on still eating soft ones mostly 
  • Brush your teeth normally, avoiding the implant area 
  • Take pain medication if needed

First Week

  • Pain and discomfort start to reduce as the healing progresses 
  • The area might still be swollen or bruised
  • Start brushing gently with a soft toothbrush 
  • After 5 to 7 days, you can start with more intense physical activity such as working out
  • By the end of the first week, your dentist will remove the stitches

After 2 weeks

  • Little to no tenderness in the area
  • Pain and discomfort are gone 
  • See your dentist if you still feel pain and discomfort as it can be a sign of infection or that it did not heal properly
  • Eat normally 
  • Normal physical activity

Aftercare tips

  • Do not eat until the anesthesia wears off
  • Avoid foods that are too hot or too cold
  • Use ice packs and painkillers for swelling 
  • Don’t brush your teeth right away
  • Use salt mouthwash 
  • If bleeding persists, apply pressure with care by using a gauze 
  • If your doctor prescribed antibiotics, follow the treatment plan 
  • Proper oral hygiene can speed up the healing process
It takes from 6 to 9 months for the implant to fully integrate, but the initial part of the healing takes around 1 or 2 weeks. If you’re interested in more information about dental implants or if you have any questions, Elevate Smile Design is here to assist you. We invite you to be a part of our community and we are happy to be your dental family. Schedule your visit, or connect with us through our social media.  


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