Teeth may fall out or need to be removed for a variety of reasons. They may be knocked out by a force, like a fall or a hit to the mouth. Or they may need to be removed if the roots are dying, if the teeth are rotting, or for a variety of other reasons. If this is the situation for you, your dentist may recommend that you get dental implants.
But how exactly do dental implants work? Here is a detailed process of how these dental implants work:
Before the dentist starts going ahead with the dental implants, the mouth must be examined. This is to see whether an implant is necessary, and if so, what kind of implant may be best. You will undergo different tests like dental x-rays, 3D molds, and other such activities. These are done to give both the dentist and the patient a good understanding of what is going inside their mouth.
Discuss the plan
At Georgian Mall Dental Group, you will be involved in the decision made regarding your dental care. A plan will be made to bring your dental health back to its best. This will include a scheduled plan of each step in the implant process. This helps the patient to understand what they need to do to help themselves, ensuring both parties are on the same page.
Some individuals have jaw bones that are too soft or too thin to support dental implants. If this is the case, the dentist will commence the implant process by doing a bone graft where the jawbone needs to be strong for implants. The healing and waiting process for this can take several months before the next step can commence.
Inserting the post
The post of the implant is what will ultimately support the tooth. It is installed in the mouth by cutting open the gums and exposing the bone underneath. Then, holes are drilled into the bone, and the post is installed. The post is essentially the “root” of your implant.
There is a waiting period after the insertion of the post that the patient must go through before the implant can be finalized. During this waiting period, the patient can be provided with a temporary, removable denture that will serve for appearances during the healing process. This denture is removable and only used during the day.
For one or more months the patient must wait for the post to become integrated into their mouth with their bones. It is important that the post be completely healed before the dental surgeon can move ahead with the next step. There may be follow-ups and appointments with the dental professional in the meantime to ensure that the healing process is going as planned.
After the post has been installed in the mouth, it is important that the patient practice good mouth and dental hygiene, especially in the couple of weeks following the surgery. Open wounds in the mouth are hard to care for, so it is important that the patient listen to all instructions given by the dental professional.
Installing the abutment
The abutment is the piece on which the crown will ultimately be placed. Once the healing process from the implant is complete, a second surgery may be done to place the abutment. During this surgery, the gum is once again cut open, and the implant is exposed. The gums will not heal over the abutment as they did with the implant. They will, however, heal around the abutment, as they do the tops of our teeth.
When this surgery is unnecessary
There may be instances where the abutment is placed at the same time as the implant. In these cases, a second surgery for the placement of the abutment will be unnecessary.
If the patient is required to have the abutment surgery, there is a second waiting period afterward, which is to let the mouth heal after the surgery before the crown is placed.
Placing the teeth
If the patient is having fixed implants put in, then a tooth will be screwed or cemented into place on the implant. If there are multiple teeth missing, there will either be multiple implants, or two implants and the teeth will be bridged together. If the patient is going to have removable dentures, the dentures will click into place in the implant, but will be removable for cleaning and sleeping.
After the implants have been completed, patients must visit their dentist regularly, especially for the first little while, to ensure that the mouth is remaining healthy and that the implant is healing as it should. It will also ensure that the dentist can do a professional cleaning on the implant at regular intervals. This is especially important for permanent implants which cannot be removed.