5 Basic Steps of the Dental Implant Procedure
Dental implants are an important option for people who have missing teeth because they allow for the person to continue with their regular eating habits, and they replace the missing teeth in order to fill the spaces where they should be so that the other teeth do not shift and become crooked over time. Of course, there is also the cosmetic reason to get dental implants – it fills the gaps in the gums and completes the set of teeth for a nice, full smile.
People may need dental implants for any number of reasons including missing teeth because of hitting their face on something or being hit in the face by something or because of a rotten tooth or teeth. But it certainly is not a quick process. Here are the 5 steps of receiving dental implants.
1. Dental assessment
Before the dental surgeon goes in and starts working on your mouth, you will need to have an assessment done. This assessment will allow your dental professional to diagnose your problem and create a plan which will detail to them how exactly they will go about your procedure. This will ensure that none of your other teeth or nerves get damaged during the procedure, and is done to try to ensure that your procedure is successful.
For the health and safety of the patient, the dental assessment is a crucially important step in the dental implant process.
2. Preparing for the implant
Before any implant can be put in, there may be a couple of steps that need to take place before. Depending on the reason for getting implants, the old tooth may need to be removed. There may also be a need for bone grafts on the jaw to prepare the jaw to receive the implant.
The patient will be fully debriefed on the procedure that they will have, as it is common that receiving dental implants is a process that takes months or even up to a year because the mouth often needs time to heal between the different steps of the procedure.
3. Placing the implant
The first step to actually receiving the implant is the installation of the base of the implant. In this step, a small incision will be made in the patient’s gum and a hole drilled into their mouth, then the post is placed into the hole. Next the incision is closed up by stitches, then the patient must wait up to six months for the healing of the incision.
4. Installing the crown
This step is also a longer process. Once the initial implant placement incision has healed, another incision is made to reveal the implant. A healing cap is installed for a few weeks. This allows the gums to heal as they should before the actual crown is installed.
After a few weeks, an abutment is placed onto the implant. The abutment supports the crown, and once it is in place, the temporary crown is placed. The temporary crown is softer than the permanent crown. This is an important step of ensuring that the gums can heal properly from the surgery, and that they are not damaged or injured by everyday actions like chewing. After about two weeks the permanent crown is installed. You could potentially find more information at Prosthodontic Associates, which has additional resources available on their website.
After that, it is just allowing your mouth to heal, and the hard part is over so the healing doesn’t take too long. Barring any infections or complications, the patient should be able to return to their normal diet and eating habits within a week or two of the crown being placed. However, the healing process is different for every situation.