Are you considering getting dental implants?
If you have missing or damaged teeth, a dental implant procedure could be right for you, but you might have a lot of questions about the process and what it entails.
What is a dental implant? What are the risks and how can you prepare yourself?
We’ve got the answers to the questions and more below — just keep on reading to get the lowdown on implants, so you’ll know just what to expect.
What Is a Dental Implant and Why Are They Needed?
Essentially, dental implants replace damaged or missing teeth. They’re often preferable to other alternatives like dentures.
During the surgery itself, the roots of the teeth in question are replaced with posts almost like metal screws, while artificial teeth replace the teeth themselves.
However, the nature of the surgery can differ from person to person, depending on your jawbone’s condition and other factors — before the procedure, you’ll have discussed at length with your dentist so you should be aware of what will happen.
How Can You Prepare?
Dental implant surgery isn’t something that will happen overnight — the process can take longer than you might think. You might not know when to get a dental implant, but it’s something that your regular dentist might suggest first.
You’ll have a number of meetings and appointments with various specialist dentists and doctors, such as Dr. Suzanne Caudry, and you’ll have an evaluation before the procedure. This will entail a dental exam involving an X-ray, a look at your prior medical history, and the creation of an individual treatment plan.
You should get some information from an oral surgeon surrounding the surgery, and it’s worth considering the different anesthesia options and finding out whether (and what) you can eat or drink before the procedure.
Arrange to have a friend or relative drive you to and from the procedure too!
Are There Any Risks Involved?
All surgical procedures contain some element of risk, but cosmetic dentistry work is very safe. If any issues do occur they’re likely to be minor.
Occasionally the site of the implant can get infected, while the surrounding teeth and blood vessels can get damaged if the implant moves around after the procedure.
Sinus problems can also occur if upper jaw implants end up protruding into your sinus cavity, but the biggest potential risk is damage to the inferior alveolar nerve. However, this is still unlikely to happen.
What Happens After Each Procedure?
As dental implant surgery is fairly minor, you’re an outpatient and will be able to return home that day.
There are a few different stages to the surgery, each with repair time in-between. First, the tooth will need to be removed, and then the dental implant material and abutment — the metal connector — get placed. Then, it’s time to get the false tooth in place.
In between the placement of the implant and abutment, there’s a healing process while you wait for bone growth — this can take a while. Between each step, and after the whole thing, it’s important to brush and floss, and to see your dentist regularly.
Your Dental Implant Procedure
There might be a few different steps to the dental implant procedure, but the process is usually simple!
Your dentist should keep you updated at each step so you know what to expect, and all you need to do is look after your mouth!
If you’re looking for more health advice, don’t forget to check out the rest of our posts.