A few years ago, I realized that I was thinking about dental care all wrong. Instead of listening carefully to my dentist and making the necessary changes, I assumed that he was ultimately responsible for making sure that my teeth stayed healthy. Unfortunately, I developed a few serious cavities because I failed to properly brush and floss my teeth, and I knew that it was my fault. I decided to start taking notes at my dental checkups and carefully abiding by the dentist's orders. The difference was almost miraculous. This blog is all about working with your dentist to improve your result.
Has your dentist suggested that you get one or more dental implants? If so, you may find yourself wondering exactly what you can expect from the dental implant procedure. In this article, you will be able to learn more about each of the five steps in your implant procedure.
Step 1: Taking Dental Molds
Dental implants are used in conjunction with either dental crowns or dentures. In order to ensure your new replacement tooth fits perfectly, your dentist will need to begin by taking dental molds. This process is really quite simple and can be completed in a matter of minutes. Since this process is noninvasive, there is no need for any anesthetic.
Step 2: Extracting Any Teeth That Are Being Replaced
If you have natural teeth that are being replaced with implants, these teeth will need to be extracted before your implants can be placed in the jaw. Since your jaw and gums will need some time to heal before the implants can be placed, this step will need to be completed several weeks prior to your oral surgery. If you require any bone grafts in order to strengthen your jaw, your dentist will often schedule these grafts at this time as well.
Step 3: Oral Surgery
This surgical step in the process is when your dental implants will actually be placed into the tooth sockets in your jaw. This surgical procedure will be completed on an outpatient basis. However, your dentist will need to place you under general anesthesia for this procedure. Consequently, you will need to have someone available to drive you home after your surgery since you will not be able to drive for at least several hours after your procedure.
Step 4: Healing
This is often the longest step in the dental implant procedure. During this step in the process, you will simply be giving your gums and jaw time to heal after your surgery. As your jaw heals, it will begin to grow around your new implants. This gives your implants the strength they need to support your new crown or dentures. While some people will heal within a few weeks, others will require several months in order to heal fully. In order to ensure you are able to properly chew your food while you are waiting to heal, your dentist will likely offer you a temporary denture or bridge that can be used.
Step 5: Get Your Crown Or Dentures
After your jawbone has healed fully, you will be ready to return to your dentist in order to get your new crown or dentures attached to your implants. This step is rather quick and pain-free. You should not expect any downtime after this final step in the process.
To learn more about dental implant procedures, contact a dental office in your area such as Bremen Family Dentistry, PC.