Implant surgery is a common dental procedure that is mainly performed on patients with missing or damaged teeth. If your dentist schedules you for a dental implant, do not be anxious. The procedure is practically painless and will be over before you know it. Here is some basic information on dental implants.
What Is Dental Implant Surgery?
This is a procedure whereby your damaged teeth are replaced with artificial teeth and your tooth roots are replaced with metal posts. Implant surgery is an alternative to bridges and dentures that do not fit well in your mouth. The way implant surgery is performed depends on the state of your jawbone and the type of implant being used. The main benefit of this procedure is solid support for your artificial teeth. In this process, your bone is required to heal firmly around the implant, and this may take a few months.
Why Get Implants?
Dental implants are fixed in your jawbone, where they act as the roots of your missing teeth. The titanium in the implants bonds with your jawbone, and as a result, the implants do not slip or cause damage to your jawbone. Dentures and bridges often cause bone damage. Generally, dental implants are suited for you if:
- You have one or several missing teeth
- You have a mature jawbone
- You have enough bone to hold implants
- You do not have any health issues that will slow down bone healing
- You want to improve speech
- You do not want dentures
- You do not smoke
- You are willing to give the process several months before you can see results
The first thing your dentist will do is administer local anesthesia. Some patients feel some pain and experience a little bit of swelling; however, if that is the case, your dentist will give you pain medication. While healing, you are advised to eat soft and cold or lukewarm foods. After a few months, your dentist will place a crown or artificial tooth on the implant. During this time, your bone and implant are growing together, a process called osseointegration. Your dentist may first give you a temporary denture, bridge, or crown to help with your speech and chewing. Later on, your dentist will apply a permanent artificial tooth or crown.
Summing It Up
Dental implants are applicable to people with missing or damaged teeth. While the procedure may take longer than dentures and bridges, it offers more long-lasting results. Make sure you do not smoke and you exercise general oral hygiene to ensure a quick recovery.