Many patients experience anxiety over the dental implant procedure because they do not know what to expect. At Elevate Dental Implant Center in Hanover, Maryland, our trained dental implant specialists are happy to answer any questions you might have about your upcoming procedure.
To help our patients feel more confident about the dental implant procedure, we’ve gone over the basic timeline that patients can expect.
What To Expect During the Dental Implant Procedure
Deciding on Dental Implants
Before any procedure, we have a consultation with our patients. We want to ensure that the dental implant process is your best choice. The dentist will do a thorough oral health exam and take digital impressions. It’s important to ensure that you have the proper bone structure to support a dental implant. We’ll discuss procedures like a dental bone graft if you don’t have the proper bone density. If you need a bone graft, we perform that procedure, which will have to heal properly before the dental implant.
Once your dentist determines that you can receive a dental implant, your dentist will begin by taking dental impressions and x-rays. We will ensure proper planning for the implant procedure. Extensive imagery and planning allow us to give you the best possible outcome. The dentist will talk to you about placement and show you where the implant posts will be in your mouth.
In some instances, tooth extractions are necessary to make space for the implant. Broken or decayed teeth need to be removed to move forward. If you get a tooth extraction, the area has to heal completely before we can proceed with the surgical implantation process. If you have conditions like gum disease or other oral health problems, we’ll also treat these before the implant surgery.
We want your surgical process to be comfortable and pain-free. Before surgery, we’ll discuss your sedation dentistry options. We offer multiple levels of sedation, from laughing gas to general anesthesia. We consider your anxiety about the procedure, as well as the procedure length and the number of implants being placed. You’ll remain relaxed and comfortable for the entire duration of the procedure.
Dental Implant Surgery
To start surgery, we administer sedation and fully numb the implant site. Once we prepare the site, we make a small incision in the gum’s soft tissue. This gives us access to the tooth socket and allows us to place the titanium post in your jawbone. Once the implant posts are placed, the surgical portion is over. We wake you up from sedation, and you’re on your way to recovery.
Healing and Completion
It takes about 3-6 months for the titanium post to heal and fully fuse with your jawbone. We’ll monitor the area and ensure that everything is healing properly. Once healing is complete, we can attach an abutment to the post. The abutment is necessary to connect the implant post with the final restoration. After placing the abutment, your soft tissues require a shorter healing time before we can place the final restoration.
Each restoration is different. It depends on the number of teeth we’re replacing. You can get a custom dental crown, bridge, or denture. We make the restoration custom for your smile. The false teeth match the color, size, and shape of the rest of the teeth in your mouth. This makes the restoration look natural. No one will be able to tell that it’s an implant instead of your natural tooth!
Frequently Asked Questions
Will I be under general anesthesia for my dental implant procedure?
Yes, we will offer several anesthesia options depending on the number of dental implants needed. Because most of our patients will utilize some anesthesia for pain management, we do not recommend driving after your surgery. You may experience dizziness or fatigue for several hours after your appointment. We suggest asking a family member or friend to assist you by driving you to and from the office on the day of your procedure.
How long does it take to heal from a dental implant procedure?
The average healing time is 6 months. While the healing process for dental implants can take up to six months, the lifelong benefits of restoring your smile with dental implants are worth the wait. Our doctors will provide you with pre-surgery and post-surgery instructions. We encourage you to follow these instructions carefully to ensure a smooth dental implant procedure.
What to know before getting dental implants?
Before getting dental implants, it is important to know that the procedure may take months to adjust. Implants are the best option for patients who want a dental restoration that matches the appearance and functions of their natural teeth.
Does food get under dental implants?
To prevent food from getting stuck underneath, your dentist cements the dental implant cap in place. Your dentist may have incorrectly placed the dental implant if you are finding food under there. Call our office if you have these issues so we can adjust your dental implants.
Can your mouth reject an implant?
Your body can reject a dental implant. However, it is extremely rare. This occurs in less than 2% of patients, so in most cases, implants adapt well and are a long-lasting replacement for tooth replacement.
How can I make my dental implant heal faster?
The best way to make your dental implant heal faster is to rest and stay hydrated. We also recommend rinsing with saltwater after your procedure and refraining from smoking to help your mouth heal faster.
Schedule A Dental Exam & Consultation
We perform your entire dental implant procedure, from start to finish, all under one roof at our dental practice. Our team of dental implant experts is here to help you remain calm and comfortable at every stage of your dental restoration journey. To take the first step in replacing a missing tooth, schedule an appointment with your local Hanover, Maryland dental implant specialists today.