Implant Placement PRocess at WOSC
A consultation with our Implant Coordinator and one of our surgeons is always required before implant placement. A CBCT x-ray will be taken so evaluation of your bone can be reviewed during the consultation along with discussion of treatment options.
The actual procedure to place one dental implant takes about 15 to 30 minutes, the more implants to be place will increase the appointment time. The number of appointments and time required, before and after placement vary from patient to patient. But, for most patients bone grafting is needed before the placement of dental implants. With bone grafting the average time from tooth extraction (if needed) to placement of crown (done by general dentist) is 6-8 months. This Implant Timeline will provide a better understanding to the entire implant placement process including bone grafting.
The below image shows the process after bone graft healing or when bone grafting is not required. Without bone grafting the dental implant process is roughly 3-4 months.
Prior to surgery, you may receive antibiotics for infected teeth or tooth. Day of surgery intravenous sedation or nitrous oxide (laughing gas) may be used for greater comfort. These options are discussed with you at your consultation appointment. A local anesthetic will be administered to numb the area where the dental implant will be placed.
When you are comfortable, the surgeon makes a small incision in the gum tissue to reveal the bone, he will then create space for the implant using special instruments, and gently inserts it into the newly made space in your bone. After the implant is placed, it takes about 3-6 months for the implant to completely integrate into the bone and heal properly. It may seem like a long time to wait for something you can’t see to heal, but osseointegration (bone integration with implant) is happening which helps lessen any chances of implant failure. Depending on the the tooth position, for example a front tooth, you may work with your general dentist to get a flipper made for you to wear during this healing period. You are also able to wear temporary dentures and eat a soft diet during this time.
The top of this implant is often visible through the gum. Though, sometimes it is better in the early stages of healing to have the implant covered by the gum tissue.
Once the implant integrates with the bone. At your last follow-up appointment at our office, it will be determined if the implant has integrated securely. If so, you will then be “released” from our office and are ready for the placement of your crown/artificial tooth, which is done by your general dentist at their office. Sometimes at your last appointment, our doctors will uncover the the buried implant(s) and attach an abutment (small posts, which will act as an anchor(s) for the crown/artificial tooth). These posts will protrude through the gums, so you will be able to see them until the crown is placed by your general dentist.
Below are examples of what a healing abutment looks like:
Overall, most patients experience minimal disruption in their daily life after the implant placement.
Who Actually Performs the Implant Placement?
Implants are a team effort between our surgeons and your dentist. Our doctors perform the actual implant placement as well as any initial tooth extraction/bone grafting necessary). Once our part is complete, we will release you to your dentist, to fit and make the permanent crown/prosthesis. Your dentist is also able to make any temporary prosthesis needed during the implant process.
Why Dental Implants?
Dental implants can be your doorway to renewed self-confidence and peace of mind.
They help to preserve facial structure and prevent bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.
They are your opportunity to have the look, feel, and function of a natural tooth.
A Swedish scientist and orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Per-Ingvar Branemark, developed this concept for oral rehabilitation more than thirty-five years ago. With his pioneering research, Dr. Branemark opened the door to a lifetime of renewed comfort and self-confidence for millions of individuals facing the frustration and embarrassment of tooth loss. His original plan was for implants to be placed by oral & maxillofacial surgeons only.
Do Implants Need Special Care?
Once the implants are placed, they will serve you well for many years if you take care of them and keep your mouth healthy. Good oral hygiene (brushing and flossing) and keeping regular appointments with your dental specialists are the only special care implants require.
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Winchester Oral Surgery Center
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