How To Maintain & Take Care Of Dental Implants

by Andrew Mueller, DMD, MD | Oct 16, 2023

Receiving full mouth dental implants is an incredible opportunity to regain a beautiful smile that functions like natural teeth. That being said, it’s also a major life event and an investment you expect to last a lifetime.

With proper care and maintenance your implants will remain strong and healthy. But many patients wonder what exactly is involved in dental implant care and how to maintain optimal oral health practices directly following surgery as well as over the long term.

Our team of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons at Doctors Implants is always prepared to offer the best advice to our valued patients. Below, we’ve provided an overview of how to properly care for dental implants and practice good oral hygiene both post-surgery and in the months and years that follow.

For more information about Doctors Implants’ revolutionary 6 Hour Smile or to receive answers to specific dental implant care questions, call us directly at 1-844-SMILES2.

What To Do Immediately After a Dental Implant Procedure

The 6 Hour Smile is an all-in-one dental implant surgery that involves the removal of unhealthy teeth (if necessary), the surgical placement of titanium dental implants, and the installation of prosthetic teeth. When you leave the Doctors Implants offices at the end of the day you’ll have a brand new smile, but carefully following post-operative care instructions throughout the healing process is crucial.

In the first 24 hours following your implant procedure, you’ll need to regularly apply ice to the treatment area and avoid hot liquids and foods. You’ll also need to take pain medication as prescribed, refrain from chewing, spitting, sucking through a straw. 

As you heal, you’ll be able to resume a more normal routine but it will still be extremely important to:

  • Eat soft foods
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol
  • Keep up with daily hygiene

Daily hygiene immediately following implant surgery involves brushing with a soft bristle toothbrush and a gel toothpaste twice daily and rinsing the mouth with saltwater every hour of the day (about 10 times per day). After approximately 10 days have passed, you’ll be able to begin using your Waterpik on the soft setting after every meal and throughout the day as often as you feel it is necessary.

Long-Term Dental Implant Care

Once you’ve had your Final Delivery appointment and received your final teeth (usually 5-7 months post-surgery), regular maintenance will be critical for the long-term success of your dental implants. 

At Doctors Implants, we recommend brushing twice daily using a soft nylon brush and a non-abrasive gel toothpaste, using your Waterpik every time you brush, and protecting your teeth with a custom mouthguard if you tend to grind them (just as you would with natural teeth). If you are a smoker, quitting during the healing process (and, ideally, forever) is strongly advised.

Though you can return to a normal diet once you’ve received your final teeth, it’s always best to avoid extremely sticky or hard foods.

Foods To Avoid

The first 8-12 weeks after surgery during your healing period the foods you will need to avoid include:

  • Crunchy foods (nuts, chips)
  • Ice
  • Hard candy
  • Gum
  • Raw fruits and vegetables (carrots, apples, broccoli)
  • Foods with skin on the outside (tomatoes, grapes)
  • Foods that require tearing using front or back teeth (pizza crust, bagels, hamburgers with buns)

Soft foods that will allow for complete healing around the implant site include well-cooked pasta, eggs/omelets, mashed foods, rice, yogurt, oatmeal, smoothies/shakes, pancakes, soups, beans, tuna, applesauce, muffins, fish, and more.

Implant Care Vs. Natural Teeth

Like natural teeth, dental implants require consistent daily maintenance and should be treated with care and respect. Committing to all recommended oral hygiene practices (post-surgery and in the long term) and coming in for hygiene appointments should keep your dental implants in optimum health condition and offer you a lifetime of satisfaction.

To book your free doctors consultation with the leading Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons at Doctors Implants, call 1-844-SMILES2 today!

About the Author

Andrew Mueller, DMD, MD

Dr. Andrew Mueller loves being an oral and Maxillofacial surgeon. After completing both dental and then medical school, he did a general surgery residency and an oral/maxillofacial surgery residency (both at Parkland hospital in Dallas, Texas). He has performed countless general anesthetics in the operating room, learning how to safely put patients to sleep and wake them back up.