In the grand scheme of things, dental implant placement is relatively quick. Yet, you can still expect your journey to dental implants to take you the better part of a year, maybe even a little longer depending on how strong of a candidate you are. Taking a look at all that a typical dental implant journey entails can help put the path before you into perspective. Find out what you can expect during the consultation phase, during placement and during the healing period.
Consultation and Examination
Dental implants are the top option for replacing missing teeth, but not necessarily the best solution for everyone who needs new teeth. During the consultation stage, your dental staff will work to determine whether dental implants are your best option and if you’re a strong candidate for the dental restorations.
Your dentist will take and review 3D scans of your mouth to gauge the strength of the jawbones underneath your gums. Your jawbones will need to be strong enough to support the implants.
Placement and Supporting Procedures
If you’re not an especially strong candidate for dental implants, you may need a supporting procedure or two to improve your candidacy:
- Bone grafting
- Sinus lift
- Tooth extraction
When you’re finally ready to have your implants placed, you’ll be given a shot of a local anesthetic to ensure that you feel no pain during the procedure. The dentist will have already plotted out exactly where your implants will go, and will proceed to drill pilot holes into the jawbone for the implants. From there, your dentist will use surgical guides to precisely insert the dental implants into the jawbone. An entire set of dental implants can usually be placed in just one appointment.
Healing and Restoration
Depending on how strong your jawbones are, you may get temporary teeth you can use just days after surgery or you may have to wear dentures until the implants have healed enough to bear the weight of replacement teeth.
It’ll take at least four months for your implants to heal. But once they, you’ll visit your dentist again to get your permanent replacement teeth attached to your new implants.
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