Tag Archives: Dental Implants

5 Facts About Dental Implants

Dental implants are the longest lasting and more natural looking and feeling tooth restoration option available. Implants are a viable and beneficial option in most scenarios. Implants last for years, closely imitate natural teeth and are affordable. If you’ve lost or damaged teeth, dental implants could be your solution. 

1. Implants Don’t Get Cavities.

Unlike natural teeth, implants do not decay! You should still practice good oral hygiene, brushing at least twice a day and flossing once a day. You should also continue to see your dentist regularly for checkups. These practices will protect the surrounding gums and teeth and keep them healthy. With some good oral hygiene, your implants can keep looking and feeling natural without any cavities for years to come. No need to worry about fillings! 

2. Implantation Surgery is Simple.

Dental implantation is a simple procedure that is fairly painless. First off, a titanium post is implanted into the jawbone, then an abutment is attached to the post. Next, the crown is attached. The crown is a prosthetic tooth, made to look and feel like a natural tooth. Though implants actually fuse to your jawbone, it is not an overly complicated surgery. If you are curious what this surgery could look like for you, come see us and our expert surgeons at Oral and Facial Surgery of Utah. 

3. Implants Last For Years.

Because dental implants fuse with your jawbone, they are a long term solution. There is a titanium post that forms with the base of the implants and fuses to your jawbone. With dental implants, you aren’t just replacing a crown, you’re replacing a whole tooth, installing a full replacement in a sense. Dental implants are the only tooth restoration option that stimulates bone growth. 

4. You Can Get Implants at any Age.

Dental implants know no age restrictions. This tooth restoration process can be done any time a tooth is extracted, knocked out, damaged, or lost for any reason. An oral surgeon will have to determine if your jaw is healthy and strong enough to sustain implantation. Children, adults, and the elderly can benefit from dental implants. Tooth restoration can benefit all ages. 

5. Many People Have Dental Implants.

Did you know that over 3 million people in the US have dental implants? According to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry, currently 3 million people have implants and about 500,000 more are projected to get them annually. It may be hard to tell how many people have implants because they look so natural, there is no way to tell. But dental implants are extremely common. 

If you’re interested in dental implants or want to see if they are a good option for you, come see us at Oral and Facial Surgery of Utah! Our staff can help you determine the best course of action for you. 

     

Bone Grafting and Dental Implants

Getting dental implants may also require getting a bone graft for some people. Bone graft surgery sounds like a scary thing, but it isn’t as bad as it sounds. At Oral & Facial Surgery of Utah, our professionals can work with you to make the process as smooth as possible.

Bone Grafting

Bone grafting is not always required for dental implants. But if your jawbone isn’t thick enough or if it’s too soft, a bone graft may be needed for successful dental implants. Bone grafts create a solid base for a dental implant. There are different options for bone grafts—could a natural bone graft where bone is taken from another location in your body. Or there is a synthetic bone graft, where a bone substitute is used. Depending on your situation, you will likely only need minor bone grafting. Your oral surgeon can discuss whether you need bone grafting and what it will look like.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are a great way to replace a missing tooth in a very natural way. Usually, dental implant surgery is performed in stages. Firstly, the damaged tooth or teeth will need to be removed. Whether teeth have been lost or damaged due to decay, injury, or trauma—some bone loss has likely occurred. This can be dangerous, the bone around the jaw can start to deteriorate which will lead to whole other set of problems.

What the Procedure Looks Like

So, what does bone grafting look like? Bone grafting involves removing a piece of bone from another part of the body, or using synthetic bone, and transplanting it into the jawbone. Using a synthetic bone will save the patient from needing a second surgical site. It can take a few months for the transplant to grow and become strong enough to support the dental implant. The jawbone will need time to heal. Once healing is complete, an extension of the implant’s mental post—an abutment—can be placed into the jaw. The jaw will need time to heal again. Next, molds of the teeth and jawbone will be taken, and the final tooth (or teeth) will be inserted. To break it down in simple steps, it looks like this:

  • Discuss what an oral surgeon.
  • Damaged tooth is removed.
  • The jawbone is prepared for surgery.
  • A bone graft takes place.
  • The jawbone heals. There is a solid base for implants.
  • The dental implant is implanted.

Post-Surgery

After surgery, you should plan for some down time to heal. You will experience swelling in your gums and face, bruising of your skin and gums around the surgical site, pain at the implant site, and some minor bleeding. You’ll likely need some pain medications or possibly antibiotics to help with the healing process. You will need to eat soft foods while your mouth heals. There will also be stitches in your mouth—they may be the self-dissolving kind or the kind you need to have removed. If your symptoms are worsening instead of getting better, contact your oral surgeon. Your mouth may be vulnerable to infection.

How Long Does Getting Dental Implants Take?

Although dental implants can last a lifetime, getting implanted teeth won’t take much time out of your busy life.

Worst case, you’ll likely only need three or four appointments. But for many patients, it’s possible to complete the procedure in a single day.

How long does it take to get dental implants

The Dental Implant Process

The first step to getting implanted teeth is an oral surgeon consultation. Although most patients are good candidates for this procedure, you will need an assessment from an experienced surgeon. But this should take less than half an hour.

Next, you’ll schedule an appointment for the first stage of the dental implant process. During this appointment, the oral surgeon places the artificial tooth roots and temporary crowns. Each can require up to an hour, but you’ll be under anesthesia and the time will go by quickly.

From that point, the new tooth roots need time to fuse with the jawbone and provide a solid foundation for the implanted teeth. This can take anywhere from three to six months. Once the healing is complete, you’ll come back to the oral surgeon’s office for permanent crowns.

Pre-Prosthetic Surgery May Delay the Dental Implant Process

Before all that can happen, however, you may need to come in for pre-prosthetic surgery.

Some patients need procedures to prepare the mouth and jaw for the placement of implanted teeth. Depending upon your case, your oral surgeon may recommend pre-prosthetic surgery to remove excess bone in the jaw or reshape the jawbone. Or you may require a bone graft to restore jawbone density.

If you need any of these procedures, the timeline for getting implanted teeth will be slightly longer.

Teeth-in-a-Day Dental Implants Are an Option for Some Patients

If you’re getting implanted teeth immediately after tooth loss or tooth extraction, you may be a candidate for teeth-in-a-day implants.

This innovative procedure lets you walk out of the oral surgeon’s office with a beautiful, fully functional smile after a single appointment — and the magic happens in only an hour.

One month later, you’ll return to the oral surgeon for permanent crowns. This shouldn’t take any longer than the placement of the implanted teeth, and it may even take much less time.

In order to be a candidate for teeth-in-a-day implants, however, you must have a strong, healthy jawbone. If you have bone loss in the jaw, you’ll need pre-prosthetic surgery.

Are you interested in learning more about dental implants? If you live in the greater Salt Lake City area, schedule a consultation at Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah. With over 10 years of experience placing implanted teeth, Dr. Partridge and Dr. Maxfield are the go-to experts for tooth restoration in northern Utah.

With locations in Cottonwood Heights, South Jordan, and Tooele, visiting Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah is both easy and convenient. To get started with the dental implant process, contact us today.