Dental implants are a popular solution for a wide range of dental issues. Implants act as an artificial root for replacement teeth. Whether you have chronic dental issues, missing or damaged teeth, dental implant surgery is an effective, long-term solution.
Are you one of 36% of the population that has dental anxiety? If so, knowing what to expect from dental implant surgery and recovery might ease your fears.
Read on to discover what dental implant surgery is and how to comfortably navigate the recovery process.
What is Dental Implant Surgery?
To understand the recovery process, you must first know what happens during dental implant surgery.
The objective is to replace dead or damaged tooth roots with metal posts. An implant is then attached to this post to replace the missing tooth.
Dental implant surgery is wildly popular thanks to how realistic the artificial teeth look and function.
From start to finish, dental implant surgery can take several months. There are several steps in the process, including:
- Removing the damaged tooth
- Preparing the jawbone
- Placing the dental implant
- Healing and bone growth
- Placing the artificial tooth
You may need to rest and recover between each of these procedures.
Dental Implant Surgery Recovery
As with any medical procedure, your recovery may be easier or more difficult than someone else’s. Factors like how invasive the surgery is and how badly damaged your tooth and gums are could prolong recovery time.
Tooth Extraction and Grafting
Not everyone needs a tooth removed or bone grafting, but if you do, you can expect a slightly longer recovery time.
If the dentist removes a healthy tooth, you may be able to have your surgery that same day. Patients with bone loss or infection will most likely need bone grafting and additional time to heal.
Bone grafting ensures you have a strong foundation for the implant to adhere to. If you’ve experienced an infection, bone loss, or decay, grafting will be necessary.
Most patients need several weeks or even months for the bone graft to heal before finishing the dental implant surgery.
Swelling and Discomfort
These are common side-effects for many dental procedures and implants are no different. You may experience bleeding, bruising of the skin and gums, swelling, and minor pain near the implant.
Some dentists prescribe mild pain medications and antibiotics to prevent an infection.
Food and Drink
It’s best you consume soft foods and room temperature beverages until the surgical area is fully healed. Avoid straws or anything that creates suction. This can irritate the area, prematurely loosen stitches or cause a condition known as dry socket.
Most dentists use self-dissolving stitches. If not, you’ll need to follow up in the office to have them removed.
The most common question people ask is how long will recovery take? There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this.
A lot of factors determine implant recovery time including:
- How many teeth (if any) are extracted
- If you need bone grafting
- Individual immune system and healing tendencies
Patients with good oral health often recover faster than those with underlying issues or bad habits like smoking, which can prolong healing time.
Investing in good oral hygiene now can make future dental procedures go more smoothly.
Smile, Dental Implant Surgery Isn’t That Bad!
Are you considering dental implant surgery but are worried about the healing and recovery time? Don’t be!
At ActOn Implants, we take a personalized approach to oral health.
Dr. Mattew Slaven consults with patients to create an affordable and effective plan that accommodates their unique needs.