If you’ve decided to restore your smile with the All-on-4™ procedure, think of it as a team sport. Everyone involved—including you, your restorative dentist and oral surgeon—needs to follow a careful plan of treatment. For a speedy recovery, here are six key steps that need to be in your post-op game plan:
1. Avoid rinsing, spitting or touching your incisions on the day of oral surgery to allow them to heal.
2. Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated, ideally 64 ounces of water (or eight 8-ounce glasses) per day, and eat only soft foods on the day of the All-on-4™ procedure. Return to a normal diet as directed by your oral surgeon.
3. To minimize swelling, use an ice pack (using either a plastic bag or towel filled with ice) for 15 to 20 minutes at a time, giving your skin adequate breaks from the cold.
4. Practice good oral hygiene, which is essential to healing. Twice a day rinse with Peridex mouth rinse and carefully brush your teeth using a baby tooth brush, while avoiding your incisions. Warm salt water rinses (a teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water) should be used at least four to five times per day, especially after meals.
5. Don’t overdo it. Keep physical activities to a minimum immediately following surgery, and if you experience throbbing or bleeding with exercise, discontinue the activity.
6. Don’t be concerned if you notice some redness or bleeding in your saliva during the first 24 hours after the All-on-4™ procedure. If you experience excessive bleeding (your mouth fills up rapidly with blood), bite down on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding site for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues, call for further instructions.
Because of the costs of the All-on-4™ procedure, you’ll want to protect your investment, and one sure-fire way to do so is through good oral health.