Instead of compromising surrounding teeth with a fixed bridge or having to wear a partial denture, many dental professionals recommend a dental implant. Implants are made out of surgical-grade titanium, which will naturally fuse and bond with the bone once it has healed into place. You can expect the implant to heal in less than half a year and provide you with a firm anchor for dental crowns and even dentures.
What are Implants?
An implant is a thin titanium post that is surgically inserted beneath the gum line and into the bone. The implant relies on a process known as osseointegration, which simply refers to the point when the bone begins to grow in and around a foreign object within the body. This process takes roughly five months, but this time can be longer or shorter for some patients. Implants are generally used to replace missing teeth without the need for a fixed bridge or partial denture. Some full denture wearers find that intricately placed implants keep their prosthetic firmly in place.
Do They Hurt?
When most people think of surgery, they often wonder if the procedure is going to hurt or if it’s worth going through the process at all. Dental implants are done comfortably in-office and take just about an hour to complete, depending on the amount of implants you’ll need. The procedure can cause some discomfort after the initial sedation or anesthetic wears off, but it isn’t typically anything that an over-the-counter pain reliever can’t help. Over the course of about a week, the discomfort and soreness related to the surgical site will begin to fade and the implant will feel practically nonexistent once full osseointegration takes place. Dental implants hurt no more or less than simple extractions or other advanced dental procedures. Many patients only need local anesthetic to even place the implants, proving that it’s a simple, quick procedure.
What is Implant Surgery Like?
The surgery involves creating an incision through the gums and drilling an implant into the actual bone of the jaw. The incision is sutured and you’ll be given crucial post-op instructions to ensure that the surgical site heals correctly and quickly. You may need to come in for follow-up appointments to check on your implant and to ensure it’s going through osseointegration. Implants will normally heal fully in less than half a year with proper care and patience. Dental implants are often recommended for healthy adult patients who would benefit from the advantages of the procedure. An exam as well as consultation is required prior to having surgery performed. The consultation is the perfect time for you to ask any questions you may have regarding surgery.