What To Expect Before, During, And After Dental Implant Surgery

If you have a missing tooth — particularly if it's one that is clearly visible when you smile — then you may want to consider getting a dental implant. An implant works as a sort of artificial foundation for a new tooth that can replace the missing one. While surgery is required in order to insert a dental implant, it's not as daunting as it may seem. Keep reading for a few of the things you can expect during the entire process.

Before Surgery

There's a lot to go over before your implant is actually inserted. You'll need to have a lengthy conversation with your dentist first about whether your gums and jawbone are healthy enough for surgery to occur in the first place. If your dentist approves, you'll work together to decide on a timeline that is the best fit for you. Dental implant surgery is done in stages, so make sure you're clear on what procedures will be done and when. Finally, don't forget to inform your dentist of any other pertinent facts, like what medications you're taking that may interfere with the surgery.

During Surgery

The first stage of surgery will involve the insertion of the mental implant into your jawbone. Think of this as laying a concrete foundation for a home — without it, the entire structure is unstable. After this step in the process is completed, you'll need to wait for your jawbone to fuse with the implant. After you've healed, your dentist will place a metal connector, or abutment, that serves as a sort of bridge between the implant and the new crown you'll eventually get. Assuming there are no complications, your dentist will then be able to position your crown so that it looks and feels like an otherwise genuine tooth.

After Surgery

Although dental implant surgery is a relatively painless procedure, there is the possibility of some pain afterward. For some people, this may include swelling or bruising and in other cases bleeding. These are common issues but shouldn't last long. Mostly, you should work to focus on treating your new dental implant as you would any other tooth. That means both brushing and flossing regularly, as well as avoiding particularly hard or crunchy foods. Habits such as smoking can also lead to the reversal of an otherwise successful surgery. Likewise, being particularly careful with your dental health after a surgery usually means being able to forget about your implant altogether.  

Reach out to a dentist for more information about dental implants