Replacing missing teeth has never been easier thanks to the technology behind dental implants. These small appliances are inserted deep into the jaw bone and given time to fuse naturally with the body. Once they’ve healed fully, you’ll have a bridge, crown or a denture made to fit on top. Implants can last for two to three decades or longer with proper maintenance and care. The procedure is easy, effortless and provides you with a permanent solution to missing teeth that doesn’t require other teeth to be compromised or damaged.
Learning About Dental Implants
The majority of dental implants available are made out of titanium. These are incredibly sturdy and are safe when used for surgical procedures. The post of the implant fuses with your bone in about six to nine months, though this time can vary depending on your unique healing process. Implants can replace a single missing tooth at a time, or they can be used to keep bridges and even dentures in place without them slipping or falling. The procedure saves surrounding dentition by preventing any damage from being done to fit a restoration.
What to Expect During the Procedure
The procedure itself is done in-office and can be performed under either a local anesthetic or sedation. If you will be having multiple implants placed, we may suggest that you have full sedation administered in order to make surgery more comfortable. However, you can choose a local anesthetic if you’ll only be having one or two implants placed at a time. The doctor will begin by creating an incision through your gums and gaining access to the bone underneath. The titanium implant post is surgically inserted deep into the bone. The gums are then sutured, if needed, and you’ll be ready to go home with your new implant. Implants do not heal for a few months, as there needs to be some time for the implant itself to bond with the bone.
How to Prepare for Surgery
Before surgery, you will have a consultation that involves special x-ray images that allow the doctor to determine the best placement and angle for the implants. If you’ll be having multiple implants placed, it is important that you have these images taken to ensure that there is enough healthy bone structure in the area that will hold onto the new implants and keep them firmly in place.