If you’ve recently been told that you need to have a tooth removed or you already have a missing tooth, you’re not alone. There are many people that have to have their teeth removed or already have missing teeth.
Fortunately, you have plenty of options to choose from when it comes to tooth replacement, one of the many options being dental implants. Dental implants are artificial roots that are surgically integrated into your jawbone to hold a replacement tooth.
Dental implants are a very ideal and effective way to replacing missing teeth, while also being considerably more predictable than the alternative treatments. Listed below is a simplified guide for a dental implants procedure.
Once you’ve made the intelligent decision of replacing you missing teeth with dental implants, your dental implants specialist will first discus your individual case with you. Then when you’ve both agreed this is the best option for you, your dental implant specialist will provide you with the following information:
- The cost of the implant procedure
- What’s included and excluded of those costs
- The potential risk and benefits of the dental implant
- If oral sedation is offered and if it is, the cost
- How many appointments that dental implants will require
- What type of care the dental implant specialist will offer
- The level of commitment that is required from you
By this point you should have all the information you need to make an informed and wise choice about whether you want to move forward with the dental implant procedure or not.
Dental Implant Planning Stages
During this stage you may be required to visit the dentist office two to three times, and may also need to get X-rays done. This allows your dentist to see the exact dimensions and the density of your bone where the implant will be surgically placed, and also allows them to place the implant as precisely as possible.
At this time the implant specialist will also assess the way your top and bottom teeth/jaw work with one another. This is done to allow the dental technician to replicate the way your jaw moves in the dental lab while they are finishing your permanent crown.
Throughout this stage, your implant specialist and dental technician will be working together very closely to plan and decide where the final restoration will be placed.
Implant Placement and Healing
With all of the advancements in dentistry techniques, dental implant procedures can be made comfortable and quite painless. If you have dental anxiety, you can ask your dentist about oral sedation. Oral sedation will help ease your anxiety and relax you through the entire dental implant procedure.
To begin your dental implant specialist will drill a hole that will match the exact diameter of the implant. Then the implant is placed into the hole and gums will be stitched around the implant. In some case, your dentist will provide you with temporary tooth replacement.
Once the dental implant is surgically placed, you can leave the office and wait for the implant to properly heal. During this time your gums heal and the implant will integrate with the jawbone, making this stage very important. The healing process can take between three to six months.
The reconstruction stage takes place once the implant has properly integrated and the implant in secure in your jawbone. At this time your missing teeth will be replaced with the final crown, which is cemented or screwed into place.
The crown that’s placed on top of the dental implant is fabricated to look just like your natural teeth, with the surface texture, color and shape all customized to blend in with your existing teeth.
Once the crown is placed, your dentist will ask you to schedule a follow-up appointment a few weeks later to ensure that your implant is healing properly and that your implant is everything you imagined it would be.
When it comes to ongoing oral care, you must take care of your dental implants the way you would your very own natural teeth. Proper oral care includes brushing with a soft-bristled toothbrush twice a day for two minutes each session, flossing at least once a day and using an antimicrobial mouthwash. Also, be sure to visit your dentist for regular checkups and professional cleaning.
If you’d like to replace your missing teeth with dental implants, contact Dr. Gary Wetzel at 717-761-8611 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.wetzelperio.com for more information regarding dental implants.
Dr. Gary Wetzel proudly accepts patients from New Cumberland, Harrisburg, York and Carlisle.