The 411 On Food After Dental Implant Surgery

Following the correct steps after undergoing dental implant surgery can help you maximize your healing and minimize any potential issues. After the surgery, your surgeon will give you antibiotics and pain medicine. You also will get instructions to follow. These will include: Don’t spit, suck ...
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The 411 On Food After Dental Implant Surgery

Following the correct steps after undergoing dental implant surgery can help you maximize your healing and minimize any potential issues.

After the surgery, your surgeon will give you antibiotics and pain medicine. You also will get instructions to follow. These will include:

  • Don’t spit, suck on straws or smoke. This can dislodge blood clots and slow healing.
  • Eat only soft food to avoid injuring your gums.
  • Don’t try to clean the implant area for the next few days, but clean the rest of your mouth normally. Your dentist may give you an antibacterial rinse to help keep the area clean.

You will return to the surgeon 7 to 10 days later to have your stitches removed.

After the implant is placed in your jaw, you will have to wait several months for the bone to bond with the implant. This usually takes 3 or 4 months in the lower jaw and 5 or 6 months in the upper jaw. During this time, the head of the implant usually remains hidden under your gum.

Second procedure
After the implants have attached with the surrounding bone (a process called osseointegration), you are ready for the second step. After giving you local anesthesia, your surgeon will make a small cut in the gum. This exposes the implant. The surgeon will remove a protective screw from the implant and replace it with a metal healing cap (collar). The healing cap looks like a small metal cylinder that sits above your gums in the area where your tooth would be. It maintains the space so that the gum heals correctly around the implant. Read more at Colgate

Why No Straws?

Newly formed blood clots need some tender loving care immediately after surgery. Regardless if you have just received a single dental implant or an entire arch; straws, smoking or sucking motions can really interfere. Enjoying delicious smoothies, soups and softer foods is ideal following surgery. However, use a spoon and be sure to avoid straws until healing progresses.

Homemade Nutritious Smoothies

Fresh fruits and veggies offer a host of vitamins and minerals. Raw or uncooked fruits and veggies provide fresh enzymes and more nutritional value for your body to utilize during healing. Some great ingredients to blend up and enjoy by spoon include:

  • Fresh or frozen blueberries, strawberries, mangoes, raspberries, grapes
  • Spinach, cucumber, carrot, lemon, ginger and dill
  • Kiwi, apple, parsley
  • Pumpkin, honey, nutmeg, cinnamon, banana
  • Oranges, banana, honey, cinnamon

Use honey or molasses to sweeten instead of sugar for a more nutritional option. Try blending the above combinations with non-fat milk, almond milk or rice milk for a creamier texture. Raid the winter greenhouse or your garden to add some beet tops, carrot greens or Swiss Chard for extra vitamins and minerals. Some patients prepare broths and soups ahead of time and freeze them to make preparing the first few meals post-surgery nutritious and easy.

Alternatively, you can throw your spaghetti and favourite foods through your blender or food processer and enjoy a “supper pudding” of sorts. Don’t let the appearance or texture of your foods cause you too much grief. This is a temporary process and once your dental implants have integrated with your jaw bone, you will be able to adjust your diet and resume eating your favorite foods in their natural state.

Diet Following Implant Placement

After surgery, especially after general anesthesia or IV sedation, liquids should be taken frequently. Drink plenty of cool fluids, but avoid carbonated beverages or very hot foods or drinks.

A soft, non-chewing diet is recommended for 10 days to 2 weeks after surgery to allow the gum tissue to heal. Chop food in small pieces or use a blender to puree. Eat any nourishing food that can be taken with comfort. Patients who maintain a good diet of soft foods, generally feel better, have less discomfort and heal faster.  Avoid foods that may cause trauma to the gums, such as chips, popcorn, nuts or shells. Over the next several days you may progress to more solid foods.

Recommended food and drinks:

  • Juice, water, milk, coffee, tea.
  • Cooked cereals, such as oatmeal or cream of wheat, yogurt.
  • Scrambled eggs, cottage cheese, apple sauce.
  • Home cooked broth, bouillon, soups.
  • Ground beef, baked or broiled fish, broiled or stewed chicken (finely chopped).
  • Macaroni and cheese, soft bread, baked or mashed potatoes.
  • Jell-O, puddings, pound cake, milkshakes, ice cream.

Your Smile Headquarters

Whether a single dental implant, implant bridge or full upper and lower implant arches are required to restore your smile, Harrell Dental Implant Center can help. Make an appointment with us today for your free dental consultation. Dr. Robert Harrell will assess your needs, answer any questions you might have and show you your best course of treatment.

Call 704-206-1330 or use the contact form on this page to schedule your appointment. During your visit a complimentary digital smile preview (an $85 value) will be created to show how you will appear when your implants are in place.

What You Should Know About Dental Implant Bridges

Patients need a secure, durable solution when a restoration for one or more missing teeth is required. Dr. Robert Harrell and his caring, capable team at Harrell Dental Implant Center offer the latest dental implant technology and the best possible patient experience to create permanent, natural-looking outcomes for satisfied clients on a daily basis.

Dental Implant Bridges

Implant bridges are an alternative to traditional banded bridges. This new, completely stable option replaces multiple missing teeth without damaging the surrounding natural teeth, which was necessary in the past. Plus, you have the security of knowing your dental implant functions similar to an original tooth root, helping to maintain the integrity of your jaw bone.

 Implants can help protect healthy teeth

When you lose a tooth, one of the most widely used teeth replacement option has been the dental implant bridge. Often times, this involves cutting off some parts of adjacent healthy teeth to ensure proper balance of the dental bridge.
Thanks to dental implants, we can now position a crown or a bridge on the dental implant itself. Other teeth do not need to suffer because of the plight of one.

Dental implants are a way of ensuring that healthy teeth stay healthy by living them alone while still providing a foundation in your jawbone to support whatever dental prosthesis you are affixing and hold it firmly in place.

 Implants serve as a replacement for the roots of your missing tooth

When you lose a tooth, it creates a void where the root was situated. Unfortunately, most tooth replacement options only focus on replacing the crown of the teeth. Dental implants focus on the parts of the teeth that cannot be seen — namely the roots, or the sub-level, as I love to call it.

The roots of your teeth are anchored to your jaw, that is why they can hold it in place — much like the roots of a tree. With the implants put in they make contact with the bone, tricking it into thinking thinking that the root of the teeth is present. This encourages it to grow new tissue around the implant, thereby creating a natural bond between bone and metal.

Without the dental implant in the root position, you will lose jawbone mass and density over time. More details at Huffington Post

Enjoy Your Favorite Foods Like You Used To

If the long-term variety of your diet is one of the deciding factors as to which dental restoration you should pursue, a dental implant bridge is easily your best option. One of the best results of dental implant therapy is the ability to chew any of your favorite foods once the healing phase is complete, including nuts, popcorn, hard foods and sticky foods that would be a no-no with a traditional bridge.

A dental implant can be a single-tooth replacement system, with no effect on healthy adjacent teeth. It involves placing a titanium metal implant directly into the living bone of the jaw, in a minor surgical procedure. After a short time, the bone and the implant fuse, and a crown restoration is placed on top to complete the prosthetic tooth system. Dental implants don’t decay, and they’re less likely to lead to gum disease than a natural tooth bridge. They also last longer, potentially offering far greater value. See more at Dear Doctor

Harrell Dental Implant Center Is The Charlotte Leader

Whether you are exploring single tooth replacement, need a bridge for multiple teeth or require a complete arch replacement, Harrell Dental Implant Center is your best bet. Call 704-206-1330 or use the contact form on this page to make an appointment. During your free consultation a complimentary digital smile preview (an $85 value) will be created to show how you will appear when your implants are in place.

No Need for Nervousness About Dental Implants

Dental implants have revolutionized dentistry as we know it. Anyone needing a tooth replaced should be excited by this advancement. However, for some people the term “dental implant” can sound invasive and more than a wee bit scary. After all, surgically inserting titanium pegs into your jawbone seems like a hefty ordeal. However, Dr. Robert Harrell and his top-notch staff at Harrell Dental Implant Center have made dental implant surgery as smooth and simple as possible. Plus, a full range of sedation dentistry techniques are utilized to ensure that every procedure is delivered with maximum patient comfort. 

Relinquish Your Worries

There are many reasons why you can relax if you’re considering a dental implant. Here’s some info that should be reassuring.

The procedure is precisely planned. Implant surgery is a relatively minor procedure, mainly because all the placement details are often mapped out ahead of time. For complex situations your dentist can use x-ray or CT imaging to determine the exact location for each implant and create a surgical guide to use during the procedure to make incisions and create the small channel that will hold the implant.

Implant surgery can be performed with local anesthesia. Implantation is usually easier than tooth extraction — if you’re healthy enough for that procedure you should have no problem undergoing implant surgery. With a local anesthetic, your dentist will numb only the implant site and surrounding tissues while you remain conscious. If, however, you have any anxiety your dentist can also include a sedative or anti-anxiety medication before proceeding.

There’s minimal discomfort afterward. Thanks to the pre-planned surgical guide and advanced implantation techniques, there’s very little tissue disruption and incised tissues are normally stitched with self-absorbing sutures. While some cases may require stronger pain relievers, most of the time a mild non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) such as aspirin or ibuprofen is sufficient for discomfort afterward.

The implant site heals fairly quickly and predictably with a 95-97% success rate. A few weeks after bone integration your dentist will attach the permanent like-like crown, and you’ll be ready for many years of full function and a confident smile. Read more at Dear Doctor

Knowing what to expect ahead of time can greatly ease your fears and help you feel confident. But if you continue to be anxious or suffer from dental anxiety in general, please let us know. We want to address your fears and discuss sedation dentistry options that will allow you to have your procedure with complete ease.

What To Expect During Implant Surgery

To begin the process, you will undergo a comprehensive oral exam. Dr. Harrell will discuss your particular needs with you in detail and suggest the best implant treatment option. This could consist of a single dental implant to replace one tooth, a dental implant bridge to replace multiple teeth or an All-on-4 to replace a full arch of missing teeth on top, bottom or both. When both sides are in agreement, your procedure will be scheduled.


Implant placement surgery is actually a relatively minor procedure, especially if appropriate pre-planning has been done ahead of time. This generally takes the form of radiographic (x-ray) examination, frequently CT scanning, and often the use of a precision surgical guide. This allows a determination of your occlusion (bite), where the new replacement teeth will be placed within it, exactly where the implants will be placed in the bone to support the teeth, and the bone quantity and quality into which they will be inserted. So you can see nothing is left to chance.

If you have any anxiety about the surgery, tell your dentist ahead of time. While almost all implants are placed using local anesthesia (numbing of the area with small shots), mild apprehension can be relieved with sedative or anti-anxiety pre-medication given either orally or intravenously (“intra” – within; “venous” – vein). Following the administration of local anesthesia, your dentist will test the area before starting to ensure that it is numb and that you will not feel anything. More info at Dear Doctor


The Stages of Receiving a Dental Implant

Dental implant surgery is usually an outpatient surgery performed in stages:

  • Your damaged tooth is removed.
  • Your jawbone is prepared for surgery, a process that may involve bone grafting.
  • After your jawbone heals, your oral surgeon places the dental implant metal post in your jawbone.
  • You go through a healing period that may last several months.
  • Your oral surgeon places the abutment — an extension of the implant metal post — followed by your new artificial tooth (crown).

The entire process can take many months from start to finish — three to nine months and sometimes longer. Much of that time is devoted to healing and waiting for the growth of new bone in your jaw. More details from Mayo Clinic

Book Your Dental Implant Consultation

Harrell Dental Implant Center loves to help patients achieve a healthy, gleaming smile they are proud to share with the world. Schedule your free consultation with us today to learn more about dental implants. Call 704-206-1330 or use the contact form on this page to make your appointment. We look forward to hearing from you.

Harrell Dental Implant Center: Easing Your Implant Discomfort

As a patient, understanding exactly what your dental implant procedure will entail prior to placement is extremely beneficial. Dr. Robert Harrell and his caring, experienced team at Harrell Dental Implant Center believe in addressing all patient questions or concerns during the preliminary planning stages. Having you feel confident and educated about the various stages of receiving implants promotes comfort and optimal outcomes.

Preparing your jaw for dental implants sometimes requires preparatory dental work, including bone grafting. Dr. Harrell will discuss all needed procedures with you ahead of time and explain the different anesthetic options available. The Center offers a full range of sedation methods from conscious pill sedation to full unconscious anesthesia. Feel confident knowing that your sedation concerns will be completely addressed.

The following post talks about the level of pain one can expect from receiving implants.

Dental Implants: Discomfort During Procedures

Of course, dental implant procedures are surgery, and all surgical procedures do involve some amount of pain and discomfort. However, since anesthesia is administered during implant procedures, most patients experience minimal discomfort during simple implant placement. Patients who are having bone grafts or other supplemental procedures done may experience a bit more discomfort than the average simple implant patient, and some surgical techniques lead to more discomfort than others.

Post-Procedure Discomfort

Pain and discomfort after the placement of dental implants is generally comparable to the after-effects of other common dental procedures. Since incisions are made in the gums during the procedure, there may be minor bleeding at the implant site immediately following the procedure and some discomfort is common as the effects of anesthesia wear off, typically within two to four hours after surgery. Some patients experience minor bruising in the gums and/or face, especially those who have had bone grafts, as well as some swelling in those areas. Most often, basic pain medications, such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen or codeine are sufficient to alleviate post-procedure discomfort. Find more details at

Further chances of discomfort during the healing phase can be minimized if you follow the proper care instructions given to you. Being extra gentle during your oral care routine and while eating is vital until osseointegration (the process whereby the implant fuses with the bone) occurs. It is vital that you establish and maintain proper brushing, flossing and swishing habits once your dental implants completely heal.


Caring for my dental implant(s)

Because dental implants are placed in the jawbone, artificial replacement teeth attached to implants look and act much like natural teeth. Like natural teeth, implants need to be kept clean using a toothbrush and floss. Your dentist will show you the proper cleaning procedure for implants. Regular dental checkups are important so your dentist can make sure that your bite is right and that your implants are not loose.

What else should I know?

  • Several visits to your dentist or dental specialist may be needed until the process is done.
  • Checkups will be scheduled during the following year so your dentist can be sure your implants are working properly.
  • You will need to take very good care of your implants.
  • Implants can cost more than other kinds of replacement teeth and might not be covered by your dental plan. But in most cases this is a one-time cost, unlike other kinds of tooth replacement procedures.
  • Although rare, possible complications due to dental implants include bleeding, infection, numbness or injury to nearby muscles or the sinus cavity. In some cases, the implant may not be successful because it didn’t bond to the bone. More info from Canadian Dental Association

Contact Harrell Dental Implant Center Today

Whether your need for dental implants is based on an injury, poor dental health or a desire for an aesthetic upgrade, Harrell Dental Implant Center has you covered.

We are the Charlotte area leader for dental implant procedures of all varieties. Book your free consultation with us today to learn more about reclaiming your smile with dental implants. Call 704-206-1330 or use the contact form on this page to make your appointment. We look forward to hearing from you.

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