Overview of Implant Placement
The Dental Implant Surgical Procedure
The procedure to place a dental implant takes 30 to 60 minutes for one implant. The number of appointments and time required, can vary from patient to patient. The surgeon will bring great precision and attention to the details of your case.
Prior to surgery, you may receive antibiotics and for greater comfort, intravenous sedation or nitrous oxide (laughing gas). These options are discussed with you at your consultation appointment. A local anesthetic will be administered to numb the area where the dental implant will be placed.
When you are comfortable, the surgeon makes a small incision in the gum tissue to reveal the bone, creates space using special instruments, and gently inserts the titanium implant. The top of this implant is often visible through the gum. Sometimes it is better in the early stages of healing to have the implant covered by the gum tissue.
2. Tooth Loss
3. Healed Bone
4. Implant Placed
6. Implant Restored
Healing after Dental Implant Surgery
Now the healing begins. The length of time varies from person to person, depending upon the quality and quantity of bone. The surgeon will advise you on follow-up care and timing.
Impressions will be made at some point during your care by your dentist in order to create the crown. Follow-up care (one to four appointments) is usually needed to ensure that your mouth is healing well and to determine when you are ready for the final restorative phase of your treatment.
It may be beneficial to perform a soft tissue graft to obtain stronger and more natural appearing gum tissue in the area around the implant. This process involves adding a tissue graft to the area around the implant. Most often, it is a brief procedure which can be done at the same appointment the implant is placed.
Whether it’s one tooth or all of your teeth that are being replaced, your dentist will complete the restoration by fitting the replacement tooth (crown) to the dental implant.
Dental Implants Presentation
To provide you with a better understanding of dental implants, we have provided the following multimedia presentation. Many common questions pertaining to dental implants are discussed.
When are dental implants placed?
Implants are often placed a few months after extraction. At times, an implant may be placed immediately after extraction of a tooth. This may involve a little more risk, but it simplifies the process—you won’t have to wait for another appointment to place the implant. When infection or other problems with the bone are present, immediate implant placement is not the best treatment. An implant is an investment towards long term replacement, so your oral surgeon will assess whether or not you could be a candidate for this procedure.
If your tooth has been missing for some time, the adjacent support bone is likely to grow thinner and shrink. This occurs because the root of the natural tooth has to be present to stimulate the bone. As much as one third of your jaw’s thickness can be lost in the year following tooth extraction. If you are missing enough bone, you may benefit from having additional bone grafted into the area. This ensures the implant will be adequately supported when it is placed in the jaw.
How many implants do I need?
Many times for each missing tooth, one implant would be placed in each area. When there are multiple missing teeth, there are a variety of options for replacement with implants ranging from 2-8 implants per arch.