Our dentists are here to offer some general information about dental implants, how they work and what you can expect from the dental implant procedure.
What Are Dental Implants and How Do They Work?
Placing a dental implant is an oral surgery procedure that can be performed by your dentist, and takes several steps to complete.
An implant consists of two pieces that each require a surgical procedure:
- A titanium rod, shaped like a screw, is placed into the jaw bone and functions like the root of the tooth.
- An abutment is a piece that screws into the dental implant, upon which the artificial tooth will attach later.
Once the dental implant is placed in your jawbone a tooth replacement, such as a crown or bridge, is attached to the abutment.
When bone grafting is required prior to implant placement, you will have to wait four to six months before the implant portion of your treatment can begin. If you lack the bone required for a successful dental implant procedure, your dentist will recommend bone grafting.
If an extraction is required prior to the implant procedure, a quick recovery period may or may not be required. Modern dentistry allows dentists to frequently place implants while removing teeth. Because the implant is placed at the same time as the tooth extraction, there is no need for a second healing period. Depending on the patient's health, this stage will recover within a week.
Once the implant has been placed you will need to wait between four to six months while the bone becomes integrated with the implant metal. At that time the next part of the dental implant procedure can begin.
Finally, your dentist is able to add an abutment to your dental implant to which either an artificial tooth (a dental cap) or denture will be attached.
How Do I Know If Dental Implants Are Right For Me?
Along with taking a thorough medical history, your dentist will examine your teeth and gums thoroughly. Following a thorough examination by your dentist, dental implants may be the best choice for you.
Healthy gums and a healthy jawbone are needed to support the implants! To benefit from dental implants, you must be in good health and have a fully developed and healthy jawbone.