Preparing for Dental Implant Treatment: Pre-op Instructions
Dental implants provide the secure, permanent replacement of missing teeth, restoring the smile and improving dental function. It's no surprise that the success of dental implant treatment greatly depends on following all post-operative instructions, but it also depends on following pre-operative instructions. Steps taken before dental implant surgery can help prepare the body for recovery and improve patient outcomes. During patient consultations, Dr. Jose Valenzuela, Jr. provides detailed pre-op dental implant instructions. Contact our Los Algodones, Mexico practice to schedule a consultation with Dr. Valenzuela to receive your personalized pre-op dental implant instructions.
Smoking interferes with the body's healing process, increasing the risk of complications after dental implant surgery. For this reason, patients should stop smoking well in advance of dental implant treatment. Smoking decreases oxygen levels within the blood, which makes it difficult for the cells to heal themselves after surgery. The longer it takes to recover, the more likely infection or other complications may develop. Smokers should quit smoking as early as possible and no later than two weeks before surgery. Smoking should not resume until patients are fully recovered from dental implant surgery.
Stop Drinking Alcohol
Like smoking, alcohol use can interfere with the healing process. Alcohol use before surgery and during recovery increases the risk of bleeding complications. Patients should not drink alcohol during the week prior to surgery and, most importantly, the day of surgery. Alcohol should be avoided during the initial recovery stage as well.
Tell Your Surgeon about All Medications
Certain medications, vitamins, and supplements can cause complications after surgery, which is why it's imperative to tell your surgeon about any and all medications, vitamins, or supplements you're taking. Vitamin E, aspirin, Warfarin, and Coumadin are of particular concern because they can cause bleeding issues during and after surgery. Medications likes these, and others, may need to be adjusted prior to surgery for your safety.
Practice Proper Oral Hygiene
Proper oral hygiene is essential at all times, but particularly so before dental implant surgery. Proper oral hygiene helps remove plaque and tartar from the teeth, decreasing the risk of gum disease, a bacterial infection of the gums. Keeping the gums free of infection prior to dental implant surgery helps prevent infection of the incision site after treatment. The teeth should be brushed for a full two minutes at least twice a day and flossed alongside each side of each tooth and along the gum line at least once a day.
Arrange for Transportation
Dental implant surgery is performed using sedatives, anesthesia, or both, which can leave patients groggy for a few hours after surgery. Patients should arrange for a friend or family member to take them home after dental implant surgery because patients will not be able to drive themselves.
Before the day of surgery, patients should prepare for recovery by making ice packs for post-surgical swelling, gathering soft foods, and setting up a comfortable area to relax in once they get home from surgery.
Schedule a Consultation
To learn more about dental implant treatment, we invite you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Valenzuela.