If you’re planning on replacing your missing teeth with dental implants, part of this process includes your recovery after surgery. This is a critical phase in your treatment process as this is the time your dental implants and jawbone are fusing together. With a healthy recovery and proper integration, your dental implants will be strong enough to support a new tooth or teeth! To ensure better long-term success, be sure to avoid these five mistakes as you recover from your dental implant surgery: Smoking or Chewing Tobacco The nicotine and other chemicals found in cigarettes and other products decreases blood flow and makes it more difficult for your body to heal properly. The surgical site will also be more likely to become infected. Smoking and tobacco use also weakens the immune system and your body’s ability to recover after surgery. Eating a Low-Nutrition Diet One of the best ways you can help your body recover after dental implant surgery is by eating a nutritious and healthy diet. Not eating the right number of vitamins, minerals, calcium, and protein can weaken your immune system and make it more difficult for your body to heal. This will also increase your risk of infection during the recovery period. Returning to Exercise Immediately Strenuous physical activity or lifting heavy objects (that can cause you to strain) during the first week of surgery is generally not recommended. The stress this causes your body can increase bleeding and swelling at the treatment site. It can also increase the level of discomfort or pain you experience. Not Taking Prescribed Medication Your oral surgeon may recommend over-the-counter pain medication for you to take for the first couple of days after your surgery. Medications such as Ibuprofen help with pain relief but are also anti-inflammatory and will help with post-operative swelling. Forgetting Doctor Instructions Your oral surgeon will provide you with a list of post-operative instructions you should not forget to follow. These instructions will advise you to only rinse your mouth with salt water for the first few days after surgery. It will also instruct you to use ice packs to help with swelling after surgery. Schedule Your Appointment If at any time during your recovery you notice suspicious changes or have questions, contact our oral surgeon to schedule an appointment.