While most people don’t look forward to visiting the dentist, technology is continually changing and helping to make procedures more comfortable. Dental implants have been used for many years as a way to replace missing dentition. If you’re missing a single tooth or are missing all of your natural teeth, you can rest assured that implants can correct the problem and give you back the smile you’ve lost.
What is a Dental Implant?
Dental implants are typically made out of titanium. They are surgically inserted into the jaw bone. Either a single implant can be placed at a time or you can have multiple implants placed at the same time. Implants undergo a process that is referred to as osseointegration. This means that the titanium post of the implant will naturally fuse with your bone in about six months. Once the implant has undergone osseointegration and is fully stable, a crown, bridge or other restoration can be made for you.
Are Dental Implants Painful?
The dental implant procedure is not painful, since anesthetic and sedation can be used. For multiple implants, we may suggest undergoing general sedation so that the procedure is easier for you. Once the implants have been placed, you can expect tenderness and a small amount of pain that can easily be remedied with over-the-counter pain medication. We will discuss pain relieving options before and after the surgery has been done. As the gums heal from surgery, the process of osseointegration itself is not painful. Once the implants have fused fully with your bone, they are stable and will not cause any pain or tenderness.
How is the Procedure Done?
The procedure is easily done in-office by placing an implant post into the bone of the jaw. The procedure is quick, painless and you’ll benefit from a relatively permanent restorative option for missing teeth. Most implants can last for more than 30 years, so you won’t need to worry about repairing or replacing the implant once it’s healed. You can expect normal tenderness and soreness after the procedure, but this should subside after a few days. If you’re experiencing severe pain or if you have pain months after an implant has been placed, it is important to come into the office for a checkup. Though rare, it is possible for implants to become infected, break or become loose with time and without proper care.