What to Expect From Dental Implant Surgery
Most dental implant procedures are completed under local anesthesia; sedation can also be an option; in either case, someone must drive you directly from and to your appointment.
In the interim, you should eat soft foods and avoid heavy exertion to limit bleeding at the site. Warm salt water rinses should also be performed several times each day for additional support.
To ensure the healing process is progressing as expected, you must visit the Newmarket Dental Clinic for regular follow-up appointments. During these visits, the dentist will check the implant, the surrounding gum tissue and the bite.
After performing a comprehensive dental examination with X-rays and 3D images of your mouth and jaw, we will develop an implant plan. You may also visit an oral and maxillofacial surgeon or prosthodontist as specialists for treating conditions relating to jaws or gums as needed, respectively.
At home, the implant site will heal over time. This healing process may take several months and you should expect some discomfort along with swelling of your gums and tissues in your face. Some patients require painkillers for added comfort during this period; we advise against eating hard foods during this timeframe.
Once your implant site has healed properly, we'll return to our Newmarket dental clinic for phase two of your procedure. At this appointment, we will remove the healing cap that was used to protect it during recovery, and connect a piece called an abutment with its post portion - thus completing your implant procedure.
Dental implant surgery is one of the more invasive oral procedures, so dentists typically recommend sedation and anesthesia for patients to ensure a stress-free procedure.
Oral surgeons offer various types of sedation, including nitrous oxide and conscious sedation. Patients may also receive painkillers. Conscious sedation may be especially useful for those suffering anxiety, fear of dentist visits or any physical or mental challenges that make dental appointments challenging.
Once sedated or numbed, your dentist will make an incision in your gum to expose the bone where an implant will go. They'll drill a hole into it before screwing in an implant.
As with any surgery, some bruising and swelling is to be expected post-surgery; however, the pain should be manageable using over-the-counter NSAIDs like ibuprofen or Tylenol or codeine or hydrocodone from your pharmacist. Your surgeon should provide detailed post-operative instructions which it's important that you follow closely. If something seems off after your procedure please reach out immediately so you can address any concerns with them directly.
Recovering from dental implant surgery usually goes more quickly and smoothly than expected, provided patients follow all post-surgery care instructions given by their dentist. It is crucial that you adhere to all their aftercare recommendations.
Swelling around the mouth, gums and face is normal following surgery and typically reaches its peak two or three days post-surgery. You can reduce this swelling with ice packs applied directly to your face or by eating soft foods such as soup, yoghurt and smoothies. Alcohol, carbonated drinks and smoking should also be avoided to enhance healing.
After two weeks, most patients will have recovered fully. Tenderness will typically have subsided and self-dissolving sutures will have disintegrated (if used). You can begin eating firmer foods like pasta; however it is important to stick to your diet as this will aid the healing process and stay on schedule with brushing and flossing sessions with your dentist.
As with natural teeth, dental implants require regular care to remain healthy. You should brush twice daily and floss to remove plaque buildup. Furthermore, regular visits to your Newmarket dental clinic for cleanings and X-rays ensure healthy gum tissue around your implant which reduces infection risk as well as bone loss.
Titanium implants are osteophilic metal, meaning it bonds naturally with bone through osseointegration, an organic process. Once implanted, an artificial crown or tooth replacement affixed to an implant resembles the function and appearance of natural teeth more accurately than dentures could ever do. While dental implants are more durable than dentures that can break or become dislodged over time, they're still susceptible to similar issues as natural teeth such as periodontitis that causes inflammation that results in bone loss at implant sites peri-implantitis can even lead to failure, necessitating further surgery to fix it all.