Wearing Flipper after bone graft and dental surgery. Any suggestions?

I had an implant and bone graft done at the same time 2 weeks ago. I have been wearing a flipper previously to keep the space open. I am a bit paranoid that my teeth around the space have been moving. My surgeon made the tooth on the flipper a bit smaller. It doesnt hurt when it is in but I don't know if I should wear it for long periods of time. Will it damage the implant healing process? I notice when after immediately after taking the flipper out it hurts to swallow the first couple times.

Doctor Answers 2

Use of temporary flipper after implant surgery

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Your transitional prosthesis (ie flipper) should be adjusted so it fills the gap completely to avoid shifting of adjacent teeth and clear or near clear of the gum tissue where it is healing from the implant placement surgery. Generally after 2 weeks, the bottom of the tooth in your flipper can be built to make it more dome shaped and extend it into the gum tissue by 2-3 mm. This helps to develop the soft tissue and maintain the adjacent papilla and surrounding gum tissue better.

Bethesda Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon
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Wearing a Flipper

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Thank you for your inquiry. Your flipper should fit your gap completely to prevent any possible shifting. Shifting can occur over a short period of time so it's important to have a proper fitting prosthesis in the interm. In addition, your flipper should be comfortable as you wear it. If it's irritating your gums or adjacent teeth, it could cause abrasions/sores that will need time to heal before considering an implant. Try to wear it as much as possible to prevent any shifting and ensure it's truly comfortable so you can wear for longer periods of time and the area can heal properly.  We hope this helps and we wish you all the best!

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