Frequently Asked Questions
You will no doubt have some questions before, during and after your treatment – this is completely normal, and this is why we have created this FAQ section. Here are the answers to the questions that are asked most often by our patients. However, you are of course welcome to contact us if you have any other questions that are not answered here.
How should I apply ice after my surgery?
Applying ice to the area on which you had your operation will really help to reduce inflammation. After surgery, the GBCOM staff will give you a dry ice pack (single use) so you can apply it after leaving the clinic.
It is important to know that applying something too cold can cause other injuries to the area, such as damage to facial nerves or skin. Under normal circumstances, this wouldn’t happen because you would notice the sensation of pain in your face, which would make you remove the ice.
However, in the case of surgery, the area is numbed by the anaesthetic, so you must take extra care as you will not notice this warning feeling. For this reason, you should take extra care for the first few hours by applying ice intermittently, with short breaks of 30 seconds so that you do not damage the tissue.
When can I begin eating again after surgery?
Some patients are required to fast for a few hours before surgery, and afterwards they may feel the need to eat something immediately. There is no harm in drinking cool liquids from the moment you leave the operating theatre, but it is recommended that you wait at least half an hour to allow the wound to coagulate.
You must wait for the effect of the anaesthetic to wear off before eating semi-solid foods, as there is a risk of biting the anaesthetised area, as well as a risk of choking.
For the first 24 hours, we recommend that you maintain a diet based on liquid and semi-solid foods (flans, yoghurt, ice cream…). It is important that they are cold, or at least room temperature, as heat can provoke inflammation and cause the surgical wound to bleed. It is recommended that you eat food which does not contain any small bits, as these can damage the surgical wound.
After 24 hours have passed, you can begin eating more solid food with a plain consistency (purée, omelette, …). Over the next few days, depending on how the operated area is doing, you will be able to start reintroducing elements of a normal diet; try to avoid chewing in the operated area.
It is important to know that if a patient has had a temporary prosthesis placed on recently inserted implants, they should only eat food with a plain consistency until the final, permanent prosthesis is inserted (usually four months after the operation).
When should I begin brushing my teeth?
It is important to avoid brushing the area of the wound, particularly for the first 24 hours, to prevent it from bleeding. To make sure of this, it is recommended that for the first day you clean your mouth using only mouthwash, avoiding using too much force when rinsing so that the healing wound does not reopen.
After the first 24 hours, you can begin to use a special toothbrush (ultra-soft) and normal toothpaste.
After three days, you should be able to start brushing your teeth normally again (we recommend using a ‘soft’ brush).
Should I take any special precautions in the operated area? When will my stitches be removed?
The operated area should not require any special care, apart from the eating and hygiene guidelines outlined above. The stitches usually fall out on their own within 15 days. If you have been given a certain type of stitches that need to be removed, you will be informed of this when you have your operation.
How can I relieve pain?
The GBCOM staff will give you personalised instructions for pain relief.
The area I had operated has started to bleed after a few hours. What should I do?
For the first few days after the operation, it is normal for a bit of blood to appear in your saliva.
It can sometimes happen that the surgical wound opens back up and starts to bleed slightly more. If this happens, the best thing to do is place a gauze over the area and put pressure on it by biting down for five to ten minutes. This will most likely be enough to stop it from bleeding. Then, as a precaution, make sure that you do not eat or drink anything too hot or rinse your mouth too forcefully with mouthwash; this should prevent it from happening again.
For patients with high blood pressure (hypertension), it is important to take extra care in taking your usual medication, as increased blood pressure is a common cause for wounds starting to bleed.
Is it normal for the area I had operated to be more swollen 24-48 hours later than on the actual day of the operation?
Yes, the days where the inflammation is at its highest are usually the second and third day after the surgery. This is caused by the fact that after any wound is created, the body starts up a chain of inflammatory processes (some of which take a little longer to start up) with the aim of healing the area that has been damaged.
Can I drive after my operation?
Your operation may be performed under general or local anaesthetic, with the inherent risks that come with this (your anaesthetist will give you more detailed information), and the drugs used may give rise to certain changes in your level of awareness, so there are certain activities that you will not be able to do immediately afterwards, such as driving a vehicle.
My maxilla bone is in bad condition. Can I still have implants?
At GBCOM we specialise in these types of difficult cases, and we have perfected the surgical techniques which make it possible. Maxillary sinus elevation is an addition technique required in cases of insufficient bone in the maxilla. This consists of filling said cavity with the patient’s own bone and/or other materials, with the aim of creating a sufficient amount of bone to insert the implants.
However, we also perform the Quadruple Zygoma technique, which allows us to recover failed implants, however difficult the initial situation may be. This technique was created in 2007 and we have been performing it since 2009 with a 100% success rate.
My prosthesis hasn’t settled properly. What should I do?
A prosthesis will always be a foreign object to your body, so it takes some time to adapt and settle. The problems that can arise during this period usually resolve themselves in time, but in some patients they can persist to a varying degree. If this is the case, arrange an appointment with us and we will resolve the problem as quickly as possible.
I have had my new prosthesis inserted. What precautions should I take?
When using a dental prosthesis, you must ensure extremely rigorous hygiene in the whole area, especially if the crown is partially under the gum for aesthetic reasons. It is important to avoid the risk of small areas of inflammation in the gum surrounding the crowns.
The prosthesis itself encourages the accumulation of bacterial plaque, which can damage the gums, so this plaque needs to be removed by ensuring that the prosthesis and the remaining teeth are kept clean after every meal.
It is essential to follow the instructions given to you by your dentist and to have regular check-ups, never leaving it for longer than 1 year.
Contact us if you have any issues or questions about the treatment.
I have problems with wounds healing properly, but I am going to have an operation. What should I do?
The GBCOM Clinic uses platelet-rich plasma (PRP) to help wounds heal as well as possible. We are one of the centres with the most experience in using PRP in the Balearic Islands, as we have been using this technique since 2001. The treatment consists of using Autologous Conditioned Plasma to create a Fibrin that is rich in platelets and leukocytes, which is applied to the area.
To prepare this plasma, we draw some blood and spin it in a centrifuge in order to separate the components and obtain the Autologous Plasma.
This portion of plasma with a high platelet content is applied to the wounded area by our surgeons in the form of a gel, cap or membrane during the surgical operation, as many times as is required.
This platelet-rich plasma is an innovative form of treatment which was made famous in recent years due to its success in treating elite sportsmen such as Tiger Woods and Rafa Nadal. They say their “miraculous” recoveries are partially due to using this treatment.
PRP is useful for treatment due to the crucial role that platelets play in the healing and repair process of tissue damage, as well as being effective and harmless. Its range of uses is constantly being expanded and it is successfully used to treat many different issues. Its low cost, ease of use and practicality in pathological processes that fail with conventional treatments, as well as its harmless nature, make PRP a great alternative therapy.
Is it safe to use platelet-rich plasma?
Research carried out in recent years has provided experimental and clinical evidence which shows that its growth factors encourage tissue regeneration.
Platelets contain growth factors inside them; these are proteins which can accelerate the tissue’s healing processes When spun in a centrifuge, these growth factors, found in the alpha granules of the platelets, are released into the tissue where they are applied.
Although it is impossible to completely rule out any adverse effects, previous experience has shown that it is a safe method.
With this technique, the patient’s own plasma is used, so there is no risk of any immunological reactions to its use.
The Autologous Plasma is obtained and applied under strictly sterile conditions, minimising the risk of contamination or any possibility of infection in the area where it is being applied.
What are the potential risks of using Autologous Plasma?
Although the potential for adverse effects from platelet-rich plasma is very low, it is possible that it may cause:
· Superficial infection in the area in which it is applied.
· Risks related to drawing blood (venipuncture, handling the extracted blood etc.).
· Risks related to applying the plasma (damaging adjacent parts during injection).
· In addition to the aforementioned risks, issues may arise as a result of the concomitant and/or associated pathology.