To get the best results from your dental implants, you should start taking proper care of them on day one. Here are general guidelines to care for your dental implants. However, after your procedure at Dental Excellence of Blue Bell, Dr. Ken Siegel and the staff will give you more specific instructions. Reference those instructions after  your procedure, and call our office at (610) 272-0828 if you have any questions.

Three Situations after Your Implant Surgery

There are three possibilities for your situation after dental implant surgery:

  • You have a provisional crown, bridge, or denture
  • You have a healing abutment
  • Your implant is covered by your gums

The first result is normally our goal. We want you to have a whole, functional smile as soon as possible. Many procedures make this very likely. This is the case with All-on-X dental implants. The procedure is set up to give you a full provisional implant denture the day of surgery. With other procedures, like Snap-In Dentures, it’s expected that you won’t have implant dentures on the first day–you’ll wear traditional dentures while your implants heal. 

For other procedures, we won’t know what to expect after your procedure. Dr. Siegel will evaluate the stability of your dental implant to see if it can take a restoration or if it needs to have just a healing abutment or be under the gums while the bones heal. 

Dr. Siegel will let you know the results of your procedure when he gives you your postoperative instructions. 

Managing Bleeding and Swelling

It’s normal for you to have some bleeding after your implant surgery. Bleeding may persist for several hours after surgery, and you might notice bloody or slightly pink saliva for a full day after surgery. 

If you have gauze packed onto the wound, change it if it becomes saturated. This is more common if you have a healing abutment or your implant is under your gums. With a provisional restoration, Dr. Siegel and his staff might not pack gauze around them. Stop using the gauze after a few hours to encourage the formation of blood clots at the surgical site. 

You may have sutures at the surgical site, especially if you don’t have a provisional restoration. Do not touch or disturb the sutures. These are most likely soluble sutures, but if they’re not, Dr. Siegel will let you know when you will need to have them removed. It will probably be at one of your regular follow-up appointments, so it won’t take extra time. 

Swelling is a normal part of the healing process. However, to keep it under control, you can use an ice pack. Apply the ice pack to your cheek near the surgery site. Follow a 20-minutes-on, 20-minutes-off schedule for best results. 


Dental implant surgery is a minor procedure, but it’s best to take the rest of the day off. Relaxing will help your body get a good start on healing. 

If your work is not physically strenuous, you can go back the next day if you want. However, you should avoid strenuous physical work, including vigorous exercise, for about 10 days after surgery. 

Oral Hygiene

Do not brush, floss, rinse, or spit on the day of your implant surgery. On the next day, you can get back to brushing and flossing, but avoid the surgical site or sites. Instead, rinse that area gently with a saltwater solution. 

Dr. Siegel will let you know when it’s okay to get back to brushing at the implant site or sites. If you have a provisional restoration, Dr. Siegel or the hygienist will show you how to clean around it. 


Wait until your anesthesia wears off before you start eating again. You can drink cool liquids cautiously, but avoid hot drinks until you can sense temperature with your cheeks, lips, and tongue. These precautions help you avoid biting your cheek or burning yourself with hot liquid. 

Eat only soft foods on the day of surgery. You’re not restricted to a liquid diet, but avoid anything that needs real chewing. Also avoid any foods that will break into small fragments that could get into your wound. This includes chips, cookies, crackers, nuts, and more. Don’t drink any alcohol for at least 48 hours following surgery. 

Your provisional restoration will let you resume chewing faster, but not immediately. Dr. Siegel will give you guidance on when you can start chewing with your replacement teeth. Until then, chew in other parts of your mouth. 


Dr. Siegel will give you directions on how and when to take medications after your procedure. Always read the label and follow those instructions rather than any general guidelines in this text, or even instructions from Dr. Siegel. It’s more likely that you misheard or misremembered Dr. Siegel’s instructions than that there’s a misprint on the label. If you aren’t sure how or when to take medications, please contact our office, and we’ll provide additional guidance. 

You may or may not have prescription pain medication after your implant surgery. To minimize discomfort, start taking prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) pain medication as soon as sensation starts to return to your mouth. Dental implant procedures aren’t very painful, so you might not need pain medication. 

If  you choose to take OTC pain medication, don’t exceed the label dosage unless you get specific instructions from Dr. Siegel. To improve bone healing, prefer acetaminophen (Tylenol) over ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) and naproxen (Aleve). 

If you take other prescription medications, continue taking them as directed by your doctor unless Dr. Siegel tells you otherwise. 

When to Contact Our Office

Dental implant procedures have a very high success rate, and complications are rare. However, be aware of potential signs of trouble, and contact our office immediately. Signs of potential complications include:

  • Persistent bleeding for more than 24 hours
  • Increased pain or swelling after the first few days
  • Discharge from the wound that smells or tastes foul
  • Excessive warmth around the surgical site
  • Fever
  • A noticeably loose implant

In addition, contact our office if you don’t understand any of our instructions for postoperative care or medications. 

Get Dental Implants in Blue Bell

If you are considering dental implants, you can see how easy the recovery period is. Postoperative care is relatively minor, and most people feel back to normal within a week or two. 

Blue Bell implant dentist Dr. Ken Siegel is ready to answer any questions you may have or start your dental implant process today. 

Please call (610) 272-0828 or use our online form to request an appointment at Dental Excellence of Blue Bell.