Dental Implant Procedure
Dental implants are a highly popular treatment for replacing missing teeth. This unique treatment provides numerous benefits over traditional bridges and dentures. Not only do implants restore the functions of your missing teeth and your beautiful smile, but they also restore stimulation to the jawbone, stopping and preventing bone loss. The procedure for getting dental implants is more involved than traditional treatments, but here at Spring Creek Family Dentistry, we believe the benefits make it worthwhile.
The Initial Consultation
Before you can undergo dental implant surgery, we first need to determine that you are a good candidate. During your initial consultation, we examine the condition of your mouth as well as take X-rays. X-ray images allow us to assess bone loss in your jaw and determine if you need to have a bone graft performed first. We will also discuss your medical history as well as your lifestyle habits. Having certain conditions like hypertension or diabetes will not disqualify you, but your conditions will need to be well controlled. Smoking will not disqualify you either, but if you cannot quit for good, you will need to be able to at least quit for the duration of your procedure as well as your recovery.
Dental Implant Surgery
Dental implant surgery is done under local anesthetic and sedation. The procedure begins with small incisions made in your gums. These incisions provide us with access to your jawbone. Next, small holes are drilled into the bone, and the titanium posts are placed inside. Your gums are then stitched closed around the posts, leaving a small amount exposed above the tissue. Finally, temporary teeth are placed on the posts, helping to restore some of the functions of your mouth while you heal.
Before you leave after surgery, you are provided with aftercare instructions. These instructions are designed to help you deal with common post-surgical issues such as pain and swelling. These instructions will also provide instructions for limiting activities as well as what to eat, and what to avoid. As you heal, you will slowly be able to resume your normal activities and diet. As you heal, your jawbone fuses to the implant posts. This is a process known as osseointegration. The posts are integrated into the bone, becoming strong, stable support for your replacement crowns. Following your instructions will help to reduce the risk of issues occurring that can interfere with healing or even cause complete implant failure. Regular follow-up visits are scheduled to ensure that you are healing properly.
Getting Your Implant Restorations
After you have fully healed from surgery and your posts have completely integrated, we can then begin the process of placing your final implant restorations. This usually requires two appointments. During your first appointment, we remove the temporary teeth and place abutments on the posts. Abutments are small connectors that are designed to provide stability for your crowns. Next, we take impressions. The impressions are used to custom design your restorations and then bring them to life. Once they are ready, your restorations are then screwed into place on the posts, providing you with a completely restored mouth. Dental implants may require a more involved procedure, but they offer numerous benefits that can make the entire process worth it. Call Spring Creek Family Dentistry today at 503-659-9658 to learn more and find out if dental implants are right for you.
General and Family Dentistry