Dental implants are a dental restoration procedure that involves placing an artificial dental root into the jawbone. The dental implant procedure replaces missing teeth and improves your quality of life. While there are many dental implant procedures, this article goes in-depth about what dental implants do, how they work, and who they can help. If you are interested in learning more about how you can restore your lost smile and confidence through dental implant surgery or if you would like some advice on caring for your teeth, then read on!
What is a dental implant procedure?
The dental implant procedure is a dental surgery that involves the insertion of an implant post into the gums.
Undoubtedly, missing teeth can significantly affect an individual’s dental health and overall appearance. Thanks to implant dentistry, for massively helping patients look and feel healthy again by providing a permanent, comfortable solution for tooth replacement.
Who can get the procedure done?
Anyone who has lost dental enamel and/or dental bone can get an implant procedure done. Implants are also more effective than dental bridges as replacement teeth because dental bridges can be quite fragile, whereas implants provide additional support.
What does an implant surgery entail?
Initial Consultation: The dental implant process begins with a consultation to evaluate the patient’s dental and medical history, as well as x-rays of their mouth and teeth.
It is usually an outpatient surgery that generally does not require any overnight hospital stay.
When placing implants into teeth on the lower jaw, general anaesthesia may be given to the patients in a hospital setting, so they don’t feel any pain during the procedure.
To secure implants into the gum tissue, the administration of local anaesthesia may be required.
Implant Insertion: Before an incision can be made for tooth implants, the gums are lifted away from the bone, which may be done with a dental elevator or dental flaps. Holes are drilled deep into the jawbone to facilitate the insertion of the dental implant.
Abutment Placement: An abutment (metal extender) is then attached to the implant. This step is usually carried out under local anaesthesia in an outpatient setting.
Crown Adjustment: Once the patient has healed from the effects of minor abutment surgery, the dentist will take impressions of the teeth to make a crown that looks as natural as the real teeth. Finally, the dental crown is mounted onto the abutment.
A dental bridge will be attached upon implant posts if the patient has not had metal implants placed into all their teeth that need replacement.
A dentist will ensure that you receive proper treatment as per your dental needs. He will draft a customised plan for each patient and outline the entire treatment and the materials required.
How much does a dental implant surgery cost?
The cost of an implant procedure varies depending on where you live, your dental health insurance plan, and which dental clinic or dental practice performs the treatment.
People looking for implants will realise that there is a difference between dental clinics because some dental services may be more expensive than others. Other factors that increase the procedure cost can be the involvement of specialised implant materials such as titanium, zirconium, or ceramic.
Typically, the dental implant surgery cost is estimated to be $8,000 to $18,000 per tooth at dental clinics that use state-of-the-art dental equipment.
However, the tooth implant procedure appears to be the most expensive one compared to other tooth restorative options. Implants are more durable than bridges and dentures because they fuse with your jawbone as well as dental enamel.
Most dental health insurance plans do not cover implant-related procedures, so it’s always wise that patients discuss their dental plans with their dentists before undergoing the treatment.
What are the risks of not getting an implant?
An implant procedure solves the dental problems caused by a missing tooth efficiently.
Those who choose not to undergo implant treatment may end up suffering from health issues resulting from tooth loss.
Your dental health will be in jeopardy if you do not have tooth implants because the facial tissues and the jawbone will begin to recede, a condition called atrophy.
This can also result in the loss of supporting structures for your face.
In most cases, dental implants don’t cost much if dental insurance coverage is available. The procedure typically takes about 2-3 dental appointments, which should be scheduled timely to save on additional expenses like dental hospital fees or travel costs.
The benefits of getting implants
- Improved Confidence: According to the American Dental Association (ADA), dental implants may help maintain your self-confidence after successfully placing them into jawbones.
- Easier Eating: Dental implants also help people who want to eat their favourite foods without dental complications such as discomfort and pain.
- Enhanced Comfort: They mimic the look and function of your natural teeth, and best of all, they become part of you, so they eliminate the discomfort usually caused by wearing and removing dentures.
- Permanent Solution: Once dental implants are placed, they will last for a lifetime compared to other dental services that need replacement every now and then.
- High-Success Rate: This procedure also involves dental techniques that are proven to be efficient, so dental implants can last for years. If experienced dental professionals carry out the procedure, there will be no risks involved with the oral surgery.
Recovery after an oral surgery
After the dental implant procedure, most people can return to their normal activities within a week or two, with most dental implants placed into the upper jaw.
However, dental implants placed into the lower jaw may require more time to heal.
What dental implant procedure side effects should I expect?
Dental implant procedures do not appear to cause dental implant failures or dental implant failure symptoms in nearby teeth. But dental implants do take about three months to integrate into the jawbone fully, so any side effects that occur could be related to dental implants that are not yet integrated into the desired site.
Alternatives to dental implants – what other options are available
Dental implants have been widely compared with other dental procedures such as dental bridges, crowns, and removable dentures. The results have shown that dental implants are more advantageous than either of these traditional treatments because they offer a longer-lasting solution by integrating into the jawbone.
Contrarily, dental bridges rely on teeth that are next to dental implants to maintain stability. In some cases, these adjacent teeth loosen and fall out, which causes the dental bridge to fail after a few years.
Dental crowns give a person an artificial tooth if they are not supported by dental implants. They can break easily, making dental implants the only dental service that genuinely addresses a 98% implant success rate.
Dental implants also offer other dental benefits such as cosmetic and psychological ones. For instance, dental implants can help improve a person’s appearance and self-esteem as they are quite closer to natural teeth.
FAQs about dental implants
Who’s is a good candidate for dental implants?
Healthy gums, good oral hygiene, and a sufficient jawbone density are some of the major factors that make you a good candidate for dental implant placement.
When is bone grafting needed?
Patients who’ve lost an adequate amount of bone due to missing teeth, tooth decay, or any infection, are likely to undergo a dental bone graft procedure. This bone graft is required to add volume and density to the jawbone for supporting an implant-anchored tooth.
What are the different types of dental implants?
There are two primary types of tooth implants: endosteal implants and subperiosteal implants.
The latter is usually recommended for people who want to have both dental implants in the upper jaw, whereas the former is more suitable when dental implants in the upper or lower jaw are needed.
How long do dental implants last?
Dental implants can last almost forever, provided that dental specialists and oral surgeons perform the dental implant procedure using modern dental equipment and the latest technologies.
How much time is needed for an implant procedure?
The time needed to perform an oral surgery varies depending on the number of dental implants, so multiple dental implant procedures may be required to replace all teeth one or two at a time.
Who can perform an implant surgery?
For implant work, an oral surgeon is considered to be the safest option. Also, there are many patients who need a bone graft prior to receiving implants. In such cases, oral and maxillofacial surgeons are preferred as they specialize in bone grafting and oral surgery.
Simply put, dental implants are a popular option for replacing missing teeth because they’re long-lasting and can be used to provide stability to the nearby teeth as well. They function exactly like your natural teeth. The implant surgery typically takes about an hour and the recovery time is around two weeks. If you’re considering getting a dental implant procedure done, we can help answer any questions you may have. Let us know in the comments below whether it sounds like something you want to do!