How Long Do Dental Implants Take?
When you are looking at replacing a missing tooth and the dentist mentions a dental implant poulsbo wa you are going to ask how much will it cost and how long will it take. The answer is not simple or “one size fits all”.
The dentist will need to look at the health of the gums surrounding the tooth you are going to replace, the jaw bone, your other teeth and your overall health to determine an approximate time line for your treatment. You can plan on at least three appointments and weeks in between the appointments to allow your bone and mouth to heal.
After you have the initial appointment with the dentist to discuss all your treatment plan options for your tooth replacement, you will have an exam appointment for the dentist to get important information about your health and your mouth health outside of regular dental cleanings. The dentist may need special full mouth images or additional x-rays of the specific area in your mouth to determine the health of your gums and jaw bone. The dentist needs to ensure that you are healthy enough to have surgery and wants to avoid infections below the gum line or places where the jaw bone is too weak to support an implant. The dentist will talk to you about your medical history, medications you use, and the options for anesthesia when you have your surgery.
Once the dentist is confident that your mouth is healthy enough for surgery and your jawbone is ready to support an implant, the dentist will schedule your surgery. The procedure itself should take about one to two hours per implant. The dentist needs enough time to secure the metal rod below the gum line in a place where it will fuse with the jaw bone to make a strong base for your artificial tooth.
While you will need some time to recover from the soreness and possible swelling from the surgical procedure, the more important recovery is happening below the surface. The metal rod needs time to fuse with your jaw bone to create a strong, sturdy post to secure the artificial tooth. This process has a very complicated name, osseointegration, but it really involves simple merging. Recovery of jaw bone varies from person to person and it largely depends on how your body heals and how healthy your bones are. Some people heal in one month and others need close to three months to ensure that the implant is accepted as a new part of the mouth.
After the dentist is confident that you are recovering at an adequate rate, the dentist will have you set an appointment to fit the titanium implant with an abutment. This is a socket shaped piece that connects the porcelain crown to the metal rod in the gums. The abutment also offers sock absorption so the replacement tooth can function as closely to the natural tooth as possible. In order to set the abutment in place, the dentist will open the gums and expose the implant again. Depending on your progress and how well you recovered from the implant procedure the dentist may choose to cement the crown in place or the dentist may ask you to come back to fit the crown during a separate appointment.
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