What are the benefits of dental implants?
They allow patients to eat their favorite foods and smile with confidence as if they had never lost any teeth. In fact, many patients find that they sometimes forget which teeth are real and which are not after years of use. Below are a few of the benefits you can expect to receive:
- A permanent tooth loss solution, unlike bridges and dentures, which must be replaced after several years of use
- The ability to eat whatever you like without worrying about your dental implants
- A beautiful new smile
- Prevention of bone loss associated with missing teeth
- No inconvenient removable parts
When teeth are missing for an extended length of time, bone loss can occur, making it difficult to place replacement teeth. Our practice offers bone grafting procedures to restore your lost bone and prepare you for placement. Your implants will stimulate the bone beneath your gums, just like the roots of your natural teeth do, preventing further bone loss from occurring.
The Dental Implant Procedure Process
Below, we have outlined the general treatment process. Remember, each patient is unique, and your exact treatment plan will depend on the number of teeth being placed, the amount of bone beneath the gums, and the necessity for additional procedures, such as tooth extractions. During your initial consultation, we will discuss your restoration goals and lay out a plan to restore your oral health and smile.
Usually, the entire process will involve two or three visits to the office over a few weeks or months. Your oral surgeon and your dentist will work as a team and complete the final restoration.
First, you will receive a consultation appointment, where your surgeon will review your condition, take any necessary imaging, and form a custom treatment plan. If you have 3D scans taken, the images may be used to create custom surgical guides for your procedure. During your consultation and exam, you will have a chance to discuss your procedure and anesthesia options. Dr. Huang will be happy to answer any questions you have before your surgery appointment.
Your initial surgery procedure will involve the placement of the posts, which will replace the roots of your natural teeth. We perform the majority of implant surgeries under IV sedation, so you will sleep comfortably during the procedure. After administering your anesthetic, your surgeon will lift the gums and make a hole for your posts. If you need to have a tooth extracted, the posts may be placed right in the empty tooth socket. After placement, we will suture the surgical sites, and you will rest and recover.
After your dental implants are placed, they will need time for the bone to heal fully before undergoing the pressure of chewing hard foods. This healing period lasts roughly three to four months in most cases. This may seem like a long time, but the majority of patients find that they are well worth the wait. While a soft food diet may be necessary for some time, most patients are back to their regular routines after a couple of weeks. Your dentist may make a temporary crown for you to wear during the healing period so that you don’t have to go without teeth.
Abutment and Crown Placement
Once your implant sites are secure, your oral surgeon can place the abutments, which will connect your new crowns to your posts. Your restorative dentist will make sure your custom crowns look and feel just like natural teeth, and he or she will attach your crowns to your new abutments. Then, your new smile will be complete!